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Why Can't IoT Devices Do Without Location?

Why is locationing so important for IoT devices? This is because both the realization of IoT applications and the innovation of IoT business models are inseparable from the support of geolocation functions.

Ⅰ. The positioning function is just needed for IoT devices

1. Many typical application scenarios of the Internet of Things must rely on precise positioning to achieve

For example, this year, due to the impact of the epidemic, various resources including beds in the hospital are very tight. However, sometimes the resource shortage is not because the equipment is insufficient, but because the equipment that has been used has not been returned in time, so the resources cannot be fully utilized.

Some medical IoT solutions can help managers use location technology to monitor the location and usage of medical equipment, determine which equipment may be underutilized, and effectively improve the operational efficiency of medical equipment.

In the same way, the transportation and logistics industry can query the location of the fleet to avoid loss of goods, determine the location of vehicles in smart parking scenarios to dispatch parking spaces, and identify the location of full trash cans in smart city scenarios to clean up in time... Enterprises can use IoT-based solutions. Positioned asset management solutions to replace inefficient and heavy-duty manual management processes to achieve rational allocation and full utilization of resources.

2. The innovation of the IoT business model is also inseparable from the geolocation function

In the context of the new era of the Internet of Things, the "product as a service" model is widely popular. To put it simply, in the past, manufacturers sold equipment. Now manufacturers can provide services to customers in a "rent-to-sale" model, allowing the supply of various equipment to be as flexible as the automobile or industrial plant equipment rental market.

Obviously, for this model to work, the lessor must have a certain ability to monitor and control the leased item - that is, the manufacturer needs to know the location, status and usage of the equipment they lease out at any time. Especially for some movable assets, the use of IoT devices can improve efficiency.

Ⅱ. Challenges facing the geolocation function of IoT devices

Since IoT devices can be tracked so effectively, why not include geolocation capabilities on every connected device? This is because the traditional positioning technology represented by GPS faces many challenges in the deployment process.

1. Battery life

Traditional GPS trackers consume a lot of power, so batteries need to be replaced several times a year. In many IoT application scenarios, asset trackers are installed in difficult-to-maintain locations, such as moving car fleets, gas stations in remote areas, or meters deep underground. Replacing batteries is expensive, especially when thousands of trackers are deployed in the field.

2. Inconvenient maintenance

Since many IoT devices may be used for 5, 10, or even 20 years, technicians need to be dispatched to overhaul and maintain the equipment. But not being able to send notifications because the battery is dead, or because of a change in business ownership, asset trackers often "go out".

3. Cost issues

How often does a solution need to capture the location of a device? Collect every minute or every day? The acquisition frequency of the device location is directly related to the cost and battery usage time. In many cases, traditional GPS technology cannot meet user needs in these two aspects.

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