Radio fingerprinting increases accuracy compared to market leading Wi-Fi triangulation

Qubulus and Ekahau comparison study shows both companies outperform existing positioning standards

25 JANUARY 2011, MALMö, SWEDEN
Summary
In a comparison study between positioning providers Qubulus and Ekahau accuracy was measured to be substantially better than Wi-Fi triangulation. The perceived positioning accuracy was 3-15 meters for the Ekahau tool and 3-10 meters for Qubulus' Gecko tool, measured at three reference locations in Sweden and the Netherlands. At occasions, both tools presented perfect accuracy; 0-1meter.
While GPS works perfectly fine outdoors, other technologies are required to position mobiles inside buildings. Companies like Google and Apple have so far relied on Wi-Fi triangulation to position mobiles indoors. They have built up their own databases to support this type of positioning making it the leading positioning method for the industry. The results from the report released by Qubulus today show that better accuracy can be obtained with radio fingerprinting, giving the industry a tangible alternative to Wi-Fi triangulation. 

Comparison report
With radio fingerprinting the mobile is used to listen to radio signals from surrounding networks. The unique signal strengths are then used to identify a specific spot indoors. Building up a grid of those spots linking it to a map creates the positioning. To get the most accurate and comprehensive results, measurements were taken and tests performed at three different reference locations. These reference locations are major shopping malls located in Malmö, Sweden and a customer pilot site in the Netherlands. In total, several hundred square meters were surveyed. The evaluation spanned over in total four days in December 2010. 

Henrik Hedlund who worked together with Mikael Larsson on the comparison report elaborates:"The purpose of this report was to evaluate and compare the behaviours of the different positioning developer tools from Ekahau and Qubulus. Wi-Fi measurement capability, measurement visualization and live positioning were the main criteria examined. Our goal was not to present our technology in a favorable way, but instead evaluate and present the tools as separate entities in an as objective way as possible."

When asked about the results Hedlund explains:"As an alternative positioning method to Wi-Fi triangualation this report proofs that radio fingerprinting is the way to go. Where Wi-Fi triangulation accuracy is generally between 10-20 meters with great difficulty in open spaces and non-dense areas, radio fingerprinting positioning shows an accuracy of at least 5-10 m in our investigation." 


Market

The market for alternative positioning technologies such as those of Qubulus, Ekahau and Wi-Fi triangulation has been estimated by ABI Research to grow to a $2.5 billion market by 2015. With 70% of cellular calls and 80% of data connections originating from indoors according to Strategy Analytics positioning technologies become increasingly more important. 

The full comparison report can be downloaded from the Qubulus website

 
Quotes
"The purpose of this report was to evaluate and compare the behaviours of the different positioning developer tools from Ekahau and Qubulus. Wi-Fi measurement capability, measurement visualization and live positioning were the main criteria examined. " Henrik Hedlund
"As an alternative positioning method to Wi-Fi triangualation this report proofs that radio fingerprinting is the way to go." Henrik Hedlund
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Spokespeople
About Qubulus

Qubulus provides a positioning platform for smartphones where GPS does not work. Its patented solution is world leading in accuracy, cost-efficiency and versatility. Application areas include navigation, location-based gaming, point-of-sale applications, augmented reality and enterprise solutions and will change the way mobiles interact with their environment. Location data is stored on the backend to create analytics for the physical space. For more info visit www.qubulus.com

 

 

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