How Indoor Navigation Apps can Address GPS Limitations for Your Business.

Sandip Modi, in Mobile Application Development

The rise of indoor navigation apps is largely attributed to the inefficiency of GPS-based apps in complex buildings. Here are the benefits of indoor navigation apps.

GPS navigation has brought an enormous change in our way of finding ways to the destination in an unfamiliar city or location. But then, we may get lost in big and complex buildings because GPS satellite signals are not accurate or feeble. For example, a person visits a large shopping complex to meet their friends, and get lost inside the complex. Have you ever experienced difficulty in finding the meeting room you were supposed to be in? Indoor navigation apps can be an answer to these problems.

Importance of Indoor Navigation Apps

As mentioned above, we just cannot rely upon GPS for indoor navigation due to poor traceability of signals. GPS navigation is based on positioning. The receiver chip of the GPS system is running on handheld devices like smartphones or tablets. This chip picks up positioning signals from satellites and calculates them from the receiving device’s perspective.

Now, these GPS signals have poor penetration and they often fail to pass through building walls. Also, even if the positioning result is accurate, most navigation apps are failed to find locations for indoor scenarios. It makes the GPS-based application useless inside the building. There, indoor navigation apps come into the picture.

Ideas behind Navigation Apps

Currently, there are two popular ideas for developing indoor navigation apps. One is based on Wi-Fi positioning and the other is based on Bluetooth beacon positioning.

Wi-Fi signals are more common in indoor environments as compared to Bluetooth beacons. The indoor navigation app based on Wi-Fi can remain more user-friendly for this reason. However, Wi-Fi signals can be easily distorted by interference and keep on fluctuating. It is necessary to keep Wi-Fi signal data up to date.

Beacon technology is based on Bluetooth and the indoor navigation app can work on the device’s location with the help of Beacons. Based on the information gathered by Beacons, the app calculates the route and navigates the user to their destination. But, here we need to consider beacons hardware cost if we are planning to implement this solution.

Use Cases for Indoor Apps

When it comes to navigating through complex buildings, malls, or public transportation offices, navigation apps come handy. Here are some of the use cases of indoor apps.

Airports: Here, an indoor app can show current wait time and give detailed information on important POIs (Points of Interest). The app can also offer personalized coupons for various services at the airport and sends important notifications to support the entire travel chain.

Train Stations: An indoor app can notify the users about current delays and track changes. It also displays the route to amenities like the water cooler, restaurant, etc on the train station.

Offices: The indoor app can show a 360-degree view of the office and booking of meeting rooms. The cafeteria layout and colleague finder can be other interesting features of office navigation apps.

Hospitals: Here, the indoor app can show the calendar with treatment schedules and appointments with physicians. It also provides the facility of online appointment booking.

Trade Shows: All necessary information for the visitors regarding various points of mega trade shows is included in such indoor apps. Topic-related tours and program schedule are other necessary features.

Industrial Areas: Facility management teams can easily find the route whenever necessary. Drivers can also find the factory from the large industrial area thanks to the indoor navigation app.

Main Objectives of Indoor Navigation Apps

Indoor navigation apps are proven helpful in the case of an emergency. Apart from this, the indoor navigation app can serve the following purposes.

  • Positioning: It shows the position of a place or person on the map. For example, you can see the location of a particular store in the mall or the person you are looking for in the cafeteria.
  • Navigating: It can create the shortest possible route for the users from their current location to the destination. Both positioning and navigating are the main features of any indoor navigation apps.
  • Push Notifications: It can send personalized messages on the user’s handheld devices.

Talking about the business benefits, indoor navigation apps are very useful for modern businesses. Brick-and-mortar retailers and shopping complex owners can leverage many benefits of such apps. These benefits include

1. Gather data

The indoor navigation apps collect the user’s data like the number of visits, time spent in a particular location or shop, and frequently visited places in the shopping complex.

2. Send messages

Based on the collected data, the indoor navigation app can generate trigger-based events like sending real-time notifications or messages in a personalized way to the visitor regarding promotional offers, special discounts, and coupons. Whenever the visitor passes by a particular store, the message comes in their smart device regarding the discount or special scheme.

3. Offer 3rd-party services

Big companies have to pay for PaaS (Platform as a Service) solutions related to location engine. The indoor navigation apps can help them get rid of these expenses and save big on maintenance costs. In other words, such navigation apps are designed to offer 3rd-party services.

If you want to increase convenience for visitors and employees, then an indoor navigation app can be the best choice for your big business complex. It is the most powerful answer to the limitations or constraints of GPS-based navigation apps. These apps are certainly beneficial for brick-and-mortar businesses.

At InheritX Solutions, our experienced app developers can build simple yet interactive indoor navigation app in a cost-effective way. Send us your requirements at contact@inheritx.com and our expert consultants will get back to you soon.

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