Proving the Business Case for the Internet of Things

SiLabs and Quuppa develop Bluetooth LE indoor asset tracking

Steve Rogerson
January 14, 2020



Texas electronics company Silicon Labs is working with Finland-based locations systems specialist Quuppa to deliver highly accurate indoor asset tracking based on the Bluetooth Low Energy (LE) direction finding feature with angle-of-arrival (AoA) technology.
 
The combination brings together the Quuppa Intelligent Location System with Bluetooth LE asset tags using Silicon Labs' Bluetooth system-on-chip (SoC) devices including the latest EFR32BG22 SoC.
 
Silicon Labs demonstrated the direction finding technology at last week’s Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas showing sub-one-metre indoor asset tracking with Bluetooth AoA technology. The demo combined Silicon Labs' Thunderboard Sense evaluation kit and Bluetooth SoCs as asset tags with Quuppa's Bluetooth locators and position engine for tracking.
 
The direction finding technology targets a wide range of indoor positioning, navigation, and asset and people tracking applications for logistics applications. It can also be used in industrial IoT, security, personal medical devices, smart buildings and retail use cases. The technology can optimise processes and workflows to improve productivity and efficiency in commercial and industrial environments.
 
"The combination of Quuppa's turnkey infrastructure and Silicon Labs' silicon, software and tools for asset tag design provides IoT developers with a comprehensive solution that reduces the cost and complexity of developing location positioning applications," said Fabio Belloni, chief customer officer at Quuppa. "We're delighted to partner with Silicon Labs because they match our deep commitment and know-how to advance the state of the art in location services technology."
 
Silicon Labs' Bluetooth SoC devices and wireless modules enable developers to create low-power, low-cost asset tag designs that flexibly support large-scale applications. Asset tags based on the EFR32BG22 series 2 SoCs can enable ten-year coin cell battery life, less than one metre accuracy and cost of less than $1 for asset tags manufactured in high volume.
 
"Quuppa, the pioneer and market leader in accurate Bluetooth indoor positioning technology, is an ideal infrastructure partner to help drive widespread deployment of indoor asset tracking," said Ross Sabolcik, vice president and general manager of IoT commercial and industrial products at Silicon Labs. "As the first wireless SoC supplier to support Bluetooth direction finding, we offer optimised Bluetooth silicon, software and development tools to help our customers design low-cost, low-power asset tags compatible with Quuppa's large and growing location positioning ecosystem."
 
Quuppa is a provider of real-time locating systems (RTLS) with more than 2000 deployments in 50 countries. It unlocks the potential of accurate indoor location-based services with a partner ecosystem of infrastructure, tag providers, system integrators, application developers and service providers.
 
The heart of the technology is the Intelligent Locating System based on standard Bluetooth LE technology using AoA methodology. Quuppa offers a scalable system comprising locator hardware, positioning engines, and several software tools for system planning, configuration and telemetry. The system can be used for tracking and monitoring Quuppa compatible Bluetooth tags, mobile devices and sensors. The positioning engine also offers an open API to support user applications and system monitoring.
 
The Quuppa ecosystem has more than 160 partners around the world who are using its open positioning platform to deliver accurate, cost-effective location to companies in a range of industries, including manufacturing and logistics, retail, healthcare, sports, law enforcement and security, government, and asset tracking.