Before you add location services to your application or within your organization, you have to be able to answer “What is RTLS?” and “What does RTLS stand for?”.
You can loosely define RTLS (real-time location system) technology as any type of system that provides you with the current location of a given object or individual. It doesn’t necessarily tell you where the object or individual has been or what route it has taken, but rather tells you where it is right now.
By using this technology, you can feed location information into a number workflows, including personnel and asset tracking, legal compliance, inventory management, and financial queries. Below, we’ll take a brief look into RTLS.
There are a number of different RTLS technologies and solutions to be aware of:
As you can see, there’s a tradeoff for each of these solutions. Different technologies can answer use cases in different ways, at different price points, and with different system complexities—so you need to focus on what you’ll actually be using a real-time location solution for.
For instance, AirFinder and other active Bluetooth-based RTLS aren’t perfect for those who require highly accurate location. Those organizations—say, those who are tracking each individual package in a huge warehouse—would be better off deploying a highly accurate ultra wide-band technology. But for those tracking something like large medical equipment in a hospital, active RTLS is ideal. It’s the least expensive RTLS option and simple to deploy, which is ideal for the use case.
Therefore, it’s critical to be realistic about your application-level expectations. You’ll want to consider the outcomes you’re trying to power with location before you acquire a technology.
Real-time location systems can be used for a number of enterprise applications. Consider the following situations:
We’re here to help answer any additional questions you may have about RTLS technology.