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Design BLE Hub application for Positioning Accuracy of iBeacon Technology in Indoor Environments


Raid Alhazmi


Vol. 20  No. 9  pp. 187-194


Global positioning and location tracking have become one of the common applications in various industries, especially in supply chain and logistics, smart cities, public transport systems etc. Location and tracking applications in the outdoor environment use Global Positioning System (GPS) to track the location of a device. For example, am application installed on a smartphone can use the phone location and generate maps and routes from the device location to a specific location as requested. However, location tracking and positioning in indoor environment have to rely on other technologies as the area covered is very small compared to GPS in outdoor environment. In addition, GPS may not be able to provide accurate information in an indoor environment. Currently, indoor location positioning and tracking is mainly based on the technologies such as WiFi, RFID, Zigbee, Bluetooth Low Energy etc. Similar to these indoor positioning technologies, iBeacon, is new device-to-device communication technology that relies on Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE). iBeacon technology is used in BLE communication for determining the distance between two devices. The Received Signal Strength Indicator (RSSI) is the strength of the beacon's signal as seen on the receiving device such as smartphone, used for positioning and location tracking. However, there are many signals’ distortions and/or obstructions such as water, people body, thick walls and etc. in indoor communication between devices, which can affect the range and RSSI while estimating the distance between two communication devices. To address this issue, BLE Hub application design for smartphone, which can reduce distortions and/or obstructions of iBeacon signals is provided and discussed.


Global positioning, location tracking, Global Positioning,System (GPS), Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE), Received Signal Strength Indicator (RSSI)