For years, pundits have predicted that the market for Location-Based Services is about to take off. So far that has been mostly wishful thinking. But there are many signs that now the time really is ripe for dramatic growth.
Ever Expanding Universe of Location-Based Services
Location-Based Services refers to services using the locating capabilities within a cell phone or other mobile device, or using an RFID or RTLS tag attached to an object, vehicle, or person. The variety of existing and emerging services is mind- boggling:
• Tracking and Locating Assets and Resources
- Packages, Pallets, Containers - tracking their location and finding them as they move through supply chains, warehouses, ports, yards, and other facilities. - Dispatching vehicles - finding the nearest taxi cab, or service vehicle with the right tools and skill set, etc. - Instantly locating mobile hospital equipment such as IV pumps, wheel chairs, beds. - Tracking of trains, ships, and trucks in transit. By extension, you track all the goods onboard. - Boats and ships have used GPS for decades to safely and accurately navigate open seas and shallow waters. - Locating expensive tools and valuable parts or supplies in large manufacturing plants, airports, construction sites, oil fields, and other large sites with lots of stuff. - Location-encoded photos of products or anything for that matter including people and landscapes, providing "proof of location." Photos can show items in a specific location and condition (e.g. undamaged or damaged goods with longitude/latitude recorded on the image). - Farmers use location-based services to guide their vehicles across fields during planting, fertilizing, spraying, and harvesting. Precise navigation reduces overlap and gaps, lowers fertilizer and pesticide costs, minimized environmental footprint, and provides accurate reports and real-time verification of all the activities.