The purpose of this study is to develop a framework for background location monitor- ing using smartphones in an enterprise setting to demonstrate the benefits that indoor Location Based Services (iLBS) provide to businesses. A use case consisting of two components has been defined to demonstrate this: In an office setting, the employee’s loaction with respect to defined regions has been tracked and utilized to automate work time tracking and display all employees’ locations on a map in real time.
An analysis of state of the art iLBS has shown that no solutions exist to perform this in the background in an automated way, at least not on iOS. Which is why a new solution had to be implemented. An evaluation of available technologies and mobile platforms regarding their suitability for businesses yielded iBeacons and iOS as the technology and platform of choice.
The framework developed in this study is based on standard iOS APIs and incorporates an algorithm allowing it to monitor arbitrary numbers of regions in the background as opposed to the standard limit of 20 regions. Three days of testing the prototype in an office environment have shown that the use case targeted can be fulfilled using the developed framework, if remaining deficiencies are eliminated. These deficiencies are on the one hand delays in the reporting of iOS APIs which can be circumvented by selective mounting of additional iBeacons. On the other hand the determination of employees’ locations flickered in case of closely located regions, which can be mititgated by calibration of the iBeacons and taking additional data like beacon positions or data of internal sensors of the smartphone into account.
Master thesis of Jan Müller, May 2015
Supervisors: Prof. Dr. Ansgar Gerlicher, Dipl.-Inf. Andreas Schmid (Excelsis Business Technology AG)