ArcGIS Indoors

What is Indoor Positioning?

Indoor Positioning Systems (IPS) enable exact localization of people or objects inside a building in real time. You can think of it as GPS, but for indoor spaces.

Indoor positioning technologies are enabling various use cases across multiple industries and continuously gaining popularity in areas such as airports, train stations, hospitals, corporate campuses, or other indoor environments.


How does it work?

The main reason why Indoor Positioning has not been a thing until relatively recently, while outdoor navigation has become an essential part of our everyday lives, is that it required a completely new technology. That is because, due to line-of-sight obstruction caused by building walls and other obstacles, GPS signals are not strong enough indoors to render positioning results of sufficient quality.


Nowadays, several different technologies on the market are competing in this field. ArcGIS Indoors provides an IPS solution that runs on Bluetooth Low Energy and supports WiFi, but also works with other systems such as lighting. This flexible approach allows you to choose the method that best caters to your individual needs.


ArcGIS Indoors is a holistic indoor mapping system for smart mobility and efficient operations at workplaces. Indoor Positioning adds another layer of location intelligence to buildings and provides facility managers, C-level executives and operations managers with the geospatial information they need to unlock the full potential of the indoor venue, including its resources.


Practical applications of Indoor Positioning at Smart Workplaces

Creativity knows almost no boundaries when it comes to indoor positioning use cases. A broad range of industries and businesses can benefit strongly from adopting location-based solutions to grow their revenue stream and increase customer satisfaction and efficiencies. Here are some examples of how IPS technology can be applied in different sectors.



Big transport hubs such as airports or train stations are increasingly relying on indoor positioning and navigation to step up their game. First and foremost, IPS solutions are deployed there to improve passenger flow by offering mobile wayfinding via an app.


However, airports are also increasingly becoming aware of the bigger potential this solution offers for internal airport operations. Passenger flows and queues can be managed more efficiently if analytical insights are available. Critical resources such as assets and personnel can be allocated and assigned to tasks more easily with a transparent, location-based facility and operations management system in the background.


Smart Offices

As companies are converting to a more responsive workplace with activity-based working and hotdesking, finding an available workspace and colleagues can turn out to be challenging. Indoor positioning makes collaboration easier via location sharing, but also empowers employees to interact with their office on a deeper level.


Meetingrooms can be booked more efficiently, real-time navigation to rooms, colleagues and other points of interest, help save time and trouble.


Through indoor mapping and indoor positioning, facility managers are able to increase their level of awareness for the indoor environment including people, places and assets and all activities connected to them.


Resource utilization and maintenance are facilitated by providing a transparent framework that allows for easy management and fast reaction to repair requests.

Find out if your workplace is smart enough


Digital Health

Modern healthcare institutions are struggling to keep to their schedule due to the increase of patients and regular disruptions. Finding available nearby wheelchairs or other equipment and helping patients and visitors find their way to the right treatment room is taking away too much valuable time from personnel. This is not only frustrating but also translates into an often huge amount of money wasted on unproductivity.


Indoor positioning and mobile wayfinding provides patients and visitors with digital assistance to find their way to the right treatment room independently. Personnel are free to focus on their core tasks without being interrupted to give directions.


Moreover, many organizations, including hospitals, are still relying on pen and paper to organize and allocate their resources. With indoor positioning, however, these days are finally over. It replaces inefficient paperwork with a comprehensive digital system that takes away a big part of tedious manual work and instead allows personnel to find what they need in no time.

Interested in how indoor positioning can benefit your organization?

Learn more about Indoor Positioning and ArcGIS Indoors



About the author

Silvia holds degrees in Business Administration with a focus on Marketing from the Vienna University of Economics and Business, and East Asian studies from the University of Vienna. She is a Senior Marketing Manager at the Esri R&D Center Vienna where she specializes in communication.

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