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Janam Technologies releases rugged smartphone with RFID, NFC capabilities ••• Quuppa launches tag module for indoor positioning ••• Cypress Semiconductor offers software suite to accelerate IoT product designs ••• CenTrak intros hybrid ultrasound-Gen2IR IoT location and sensing solution ••• Sonitor Technologies announces ultrasound-based indoor positioning platform for smartphones, mobile devices ••• Silicon Labs provides battery-operated Wi-Fi devices for Internet of Things ••• Avery Dennison RBIS to offer panel discussion on brand protection, connected products.
By Rich Handley

Sonitor Announces Ultrasound-Based Indoor Positioning Platform for Smartphones, Mobile Devices

Sonitor Technologies, a provider of indoor positioning technology, has announced the introduction of an ultrasound-based positioning platform called Forkbeard. The system enables smart mobile devices to become accurate indoor positioning tools offering an alternative to standard real-time location system (RTLS) tags or badges.

Lyra, the first release of this platform, enables wayfinding to within 1 foot in a corridor, as well as 100 percent room-level accuracy and update rates of one to two seconds. Forkbeard is compatible with the various iOS, Android and Microsoft Windows smart devices on the market. The system leverages the capacity of a smartphone's microphone and processor, requiring no modifications or accessories to transform the phone into a positioning device or tag.

"Forkbeard represents a fundamentally new approach to ultrasound decoding developed to deliver accurate distance measurements and to find powerful Doppler effects when a device is in motion," said Wilfred Booij, Ph.D., Sonitor Technologies' CTO and lead developer, in a prepared statement. "The result is a scalable and accurate indoor positioning platform that delivers GPS-like performance indoors."

"Forkbeard is a major technology breakthrough with applicability in healthcare and other industries, such as retail and warehousing, where reliable and accurate indoor positioning can deliver significant value," said Anne Bugge, Sonitor's President and CEO, in the prepared statement. "With the ubiquity of consumer and professional smart devices, and the fact that we spend over 80% of our life indoors, Forkbeard has the potential to make transformative changes across multiple markets."

Forkbeard was the nickname of Tveskæg, a Scandinavian king who dethroned his father, King Harald "Bluetooth" Blåtand Gormsson, in 986 A.D. Bluetooth was known as a unifier and communicator, and Forkbeard as a navigator and conqueror. Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) technology was developed for short-range radio communication by a special interest group initiated by Intel, Ericsson and Nokia in the 1990s, and has evolved into a globally adopted short-range RF communication technology.

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