Ifinity, a Polish company offering tailor-made ibeacons microlocation services, is the first to introduce AirBeacons which do not require battery power supply. As it is stated on their blog, the solution eliminates the most serious technology barrier: the necessity of replacing the battery or beacons periodically.
As you may know, beacons are small, coin-sized devices that are placed in offices, shopping centres, at stadiums and train stations, they can communicate with our mobile devices, allowing us to interact with objects or services available at the spot or navigating us where GPS navigation is not working. So far this ground-breaking technology has had one weakness. Beacons required internal power supply from batteries which created the necessity for replacing them, in some cases even once a year.
But, Ifinity has successfully solved this problem. They offered another generation of iBeacon – AirBeacons – which extracts power from a single source of low-current ambient electromagnetic waves. This solution eliminates a complicated process of beacons or battery replacement, minimize malfunction possibility and as a result, improves the precision of the microlocation system. AirBeacons are also characterized by a much smaller size. Due to their features they may be installed in places which are difficult to access.
Michał Polak, CTO and the Co-Founder of Ifinity, explains: “Despite our great experiences with previous generations of beacons, our clients indicated the need of periodic replacement of batteries as a major limitation. In cooperation with our partner we have designed a prototype of a transmitter which does not require internal power supply. Currently we are in the middle of testing and planning production. We plan to deliver Airbeacons to first clients as early as in the fourth quarter of 2014.”
The company predicts that the solutions based on AirBeacons will find best implementations in large objects in which there are a need to implement beacons on a large scale. AirBeacons clear the way for implementing complex indoor navigation systems at shopping centers, vehicles way-finding in parking lots and public spaces, Electronic Shelf Labeling System in hypermarkets, equipment inventory in hospitals and storage spaces.
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