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GPS For Buildings: Wayfinding Technology Is Making Its Way Indoors

National Technology

New technology is making it easier to navigate large buildings and interior pathways.


Companies are now implementing mobile wayfinding apps or on-location touch screens to help people find their destination inside and around buildings faster and more efficiently, Real Estate Tech News reports.

Interior wayfinding works in two ways: The first is similar to Google Maps and involves using a touch-screen panel to enter the location in a search box and get directions. The second method uses Bluetooth technology to "ping" the users location off their smartphone in order to track the location and help the person find their way from start to finish.

The Mayo Clinic in Minnesota is one example of a building using this technology to help people find their way through its 59 different buildings, which are connected through pedestrian walkways.

City officials in San Diego are rolling out a similar, albeit above-ground concept that incorporates the Internet of Things to offer 30 interactive touch-screen kiosks for visitors. The kiosks will provide directions as well as information about public transit, ride-sharing and bike services and attractions for their buildings.

But the benefits are not limited to travelers. Retailers can also use this technology to track the number of customers visiting their stores, and to improve the design of the space based on how consumers are moving. The apps also allow brands to share hyperlocal content to consumers nearby, and also allows shoppers to ask for immediate assistance in the store at the press of a button.