Do we need Indoor Navigation?

Silvia Pichler, 
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This blogpost was inspired by a question which was posed during the LBS Vienna Conference and which has often been material for discussion. Being a provider of Indoor Navigation solutions, of course you already know our answer to this question. I mean, is the pope catholic? But seriously, we would like to share some of our thoughts and tell you why we’re so convinced that Indoor Navigation is what every building needs.

It is the Indoor Google Maps.

First of all, let us think back to times when Outdoor Navigation came upon us in the form of Google Maps. Before it was launched, while innovators and early adopters were all supportive and could barely wait until it was finally there, others were sceptical and swore they would keep using static paper maps or relying on their instincts. But soon everyone adopted it and now we have reached a point where most people wouldn’t want to imagine even visiting their neighbour without it anymore. Not least due to the fact that it saves you a lot of time and trouble, which is very important in our fast paced time. Now, Google Maps even helps you discover new interesting things an places in your surroundings. We from indoo.rs expect it to be similar with Indoor Navigation.

indoor navigation you are here
Image Credit: 000webost

You are here. Now, good luck!

It saves lots of valuable time and money.

Have you ever been lost inside unknown buildings? Well, we have, before there was indoo.rs that is. You don’t even have to completely lack any sense of orientation, like some of us (I confess) do, just try to find a specific shop in a mall without any help but a static map. Kind of tedious, isn’t it?
Even more so, when you are in an absolute rush and don’t know the building very well, you can get into some serious trouble. For instance, miss a flight at the airport. Have your girlfriend spend all the money on clothes while you’re looking for her in the mall. Or more seriously, someone could get hurt because they couldn’t be evacuated from a building in an emergency situation on time.

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Image Credit: seowirkt

From a business point of view, the benefits are obvious as well. Your customers will feel more at ease when they can rely on a tool that shows them the way conveniently. This helps you create an atmosphere your customers will like to spend more time in, which may also lead to increased sales, for instance in shopping malls, airports etc. And that is without even mentioning the full potential you can exploit, for instance with Proximity Marketing or Analytics.

Indoor Navigation helps impaired people.

Indoor Navigation is not simply a gimmick, it actually helps save lots of time, stress and money. The visually impaired community is enjoying the massive benefits that Indoor Navigation brings. It has given them freedom to choose their route and explore their surroundings in a way they couldn’t before.
We have realised several projects which enabled visually impaired or blind people to navigate around big buildings and find Points of Interest on their own, without asking people or forever searching for braille signs. The feedback we got was overwhelming. Read THISTHIS and THIS POST about visually impaired projects of ours if you want to learn more.

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Ford was right.

I’m sure you all know the famous quote from Henry Ford, developer of the model T automobile, “If I had asked people what they wanted, they would have said faster horses”. In our context that means, sometimes you just have to come up with completely innovative ideas to solve ancient problems, even if people may not seem ready for it. What’s the point of sticking with paper maps forever, if we already have a technology that is a lot more efficient and convenient anyway?

 

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Image Credit: Australian Business Clinic

The possibilities are endless.

Although the possibilities with Indoor Navigation alone are very diverse, the same technology also enables a much broader range of solutions such as Proximity, Asset Tracking and Analytics. This is a door opener for many industries to include Indoor Positioning services in their day-to-day business and thus increase efficiency and ROI. Be it Proximity Marketing or Analytics for Retail, Navigation for patients and Asset Tracking in Hospitals or for Heavy Engineering, or a Meeting room Finder for office spaces. Everyone will find something tailored to their needs.

TLDR:

Yes. Everyone needs Indoor Navigation because the time to replace paper maps with more convenient tools to find your way around indoors has definitely come. Indoor Navigation helps both sighted and visually impaired people navigate independently and get to their destinations stress-freely and on time. Furthermore it helps businesses save lots of money by tracking staff & goods and up their game with Proximity and Analytics.