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Indoor Positioning System for Visitor Movement and Behaviour Analytics

Technology Overview

This technology offer presents a useful indoor positioning system to facility managers of buildings, campuses and convention centres. They can improve their indoor space and safety management by understanding how people move and behave in the physical spaces by monitoring their location and movement accurately and reliably. This is also key to running a safe and experiential event.

The system is the core technology that performs two critical functions: the location tracking of people using sensor data (typically WiFi signals from their phones) and data analytics on those locations. All this is done in near real-time. The analytics produce both real-time and historical data to support decision making, i.e.,. when space capacity thresholds or safety parameters have been set to trigger notifications. The technology achieves high throughput and scale; it is able to track tens of thousands of people across hundreds of thousands of square feet.

By leveraging the existing sensors (e.g. a WiFi infrastructure) and adding or upgrading hardware only when necessary to enhance accuracy / precision, this system offers a quick to deploy, cost effective solution which optimizes the current investment. As a software only solution, the system works with most common hardware brands and additionally, as a SaaS based solution, it reduces the risk associated with a software system acquisition.

The technology owner is currently seeking partnerships with system integrators and solution providers who wish to integrate our indoor analytics technology to their applications or re-market the indoor positioning solution to end-users as part of an overall solution where there are requirements to track visitor movements and their behaviour in a building.

Technology Features, Specifications and Advantages

The innovation powering indoor positioning system is the passive localization of mobile sensors (or people carrying those sensors) using a technique that we refer to as “fingerprinting”. This enables accurate and real-time computation of the location of those sensors. Other key aspects that define our solution is modularity and inherent parallelism that enables rapid scaling and compatibility.

Any space has a core function: shops in a retail setting, booths in a convention centre, offices and classrooms in an office/educational campus. The most commonly used technology which is video is usually prohibitively expensive in terms of capital cost, effort and maintainability for the level of observation that is required. This takes attention away from the core function of the space. This solution offers a low cost, reliable solution that scales with sensors, space and the needs of the organization. The system can be configurable and customized based on customer’s requirement.

In terms of operation, the principal advantages of this solution over the other solutions are :

  • Real-time computation,
  • Scalability of up to tens of thousands of people and very large spaces,
  • Compatibility with existing infrastructure and
  • A SaaS service with low maintenance costs.

This solution has been running in two campuses in Singapore where it tracks in real time more than 40,000 and 10,000 users respectively. The solution is used to compute space usage efficiency, send alerts if certain thresholds are crossed and to prepare periodic reports on the behaviour of the people on the campuses.

Potential Applications

  • Primary application - Facility Planning and Management
    1. Provides facility managers with ability to
    2. Track and monitor in real time visitors’ indoor movements and behaviour
    3. Manage space occupancy
    4. Monitor and act on overcrowding through notifications
    5. Have better insights on space occupancy and utilization when space planning
    6. Perform historical analytics to help building owners understand trends like popular locations and how visitors or specific groups of visitors (e.g., by demographics) move between sections of a building and between buildings by time, day of the week, time of the month or year and even by occasions.
    7. To monitor and measure visitors’ movements and behavior when a building policy usage changes.
  • Secondary Applications
    1. Real Time Traffic Analytics for Event Management and Retail Store
    2. By tracking visitor locations and movement at an event or a retail store, event and retail managers will have a real time dashboard on visitor traffic in an event hall or retail store. E.g., booths visited, sessions attended and length of attendance or retail shop areas visited and browsing time.
    3. By combining the analytics on visitors’ location preferences and interest levels with the profile and background of the visitors, the managers will be able to run detailed and rich analytics to understand their customers.
  • System
    1. Data Sensing Tools to capture location data
    2. Data Analytics Solutions to provide insights on trends, behavior and preferences
    3. Process Automation Tools with machine learning capability to provide notifications and alerts

Customer Benefit

  • Most cost effective solution. No requirement for new hardware. Use of Wifi data
    1. Helps businesses optimize their existing investment
    2. Allows quick deployment of solution
  • Solution is provided as a software service
    1. Lower risk of investing in a new system
    2. No maintenance or upgrades
  • Software only based technology
    1. Compatible with all hardware (wifi access points)
  • Flexibility
    1. Able to accommodate other data sensor technology (e.g. bluetooth)
Contact Person

Francis Lim


Singapore Management University - School of Computing and Information Systems

Technology Category

  • Infocomm
  • Ambient Intelligence & Context-Aware Computing, Big Data, Data Analytics, Data Mining & Data Visualisation, Internet of Things & Wearable Technology, Mobility, Smart Cities

Technology Readiness Level


indoor location analytics, indoor movement tracking, people monitoring, mobility , behaviour analytics, location dwell time, space occupancy, space utilisation