Sigfox to Transform Global Asset Tracking with Sigfox Geolocation, the World’s Cheapest Internet of Things (IoT) GPS-Free Geolocation Service

Sigfox introduces its first big data based service, built upon radio signal strength analysis and machine learning techniques

Unlike traditional IoT geolocation services, Spot’it does not require any additional hardware, software or energy, making it the simplest and lowest cost IoT location service on the market

With Spot’it, Sigfox anticipates new service opportunities from global asset-tracking to geo marketing and fraud management services

Sigfox has announced a new “GPS-free” Internet of Things (IoT) geolocation service which provides a highly economical way of tracking large numbers of assets around the world.

Enabled by Sigfox’s global network, now spanning 31 countries, Sigfox Geolocation is a new asset-tracking service which enables any existing Sigfox module to become a geolocation device, without the need to perform retrofit or hardware or software upgrades. The service key benefits include:

  • Lowest-cost IoT location service: Sigfox Geolocation does not require any additional hardware or software upgrades, and the device does not have to transmit more messages, meaning there is no impact on the solution operating cost for customers.
  • Preserving low energy: Sigfox Geolocation does not rely on energy intensive GPS technology, nor require additional processing or any more energy than what Sigfox-enabled devices already consume.
  • Enabled through a planetary network: Sigfox Geolocation is embedded in Sigfox’s global network footprint and represents the first global IoT geolocation offer. This allows the simplification of global supply chain management: once a device is registered into the Sigfox Cloud, the geolocation service is available in all territories where the network is present.
  • Unlike traditional GPS-tracking, Sigfox Geolocation works both indoor and outdoor.

Sigfox Geolocation has been specifically designed to unlock tracking capabilities for asset-intensive industries in markets such as supply chain and logistics (tracking of pallets, containers, trailers, …), agriculture, retail, construction. As Sigfox’s communication modules are as low as $2 and require very little energy consumption with batteries lasting for up to two decades, the service makes it highly economical to track virtually any object.

Traditionally, companies have tracked their assets in transit by either scanning at the point of contact, or through GPS tracking. However, scanning at points of contact is often prone to error and loss in between touch points. Additionally, aside from the high cost of GPS hardware, the energy intensive operation means there is a high maintenance cost associated in continually replacing batteries. As such, GPS tracking is reserved for tracking high value goods and is uneconomical for tracking mass freight or assets.

“Sigfox Geolocation is not only set to transform the global freight industry, but we anticipate that new services will be developed. Imagine a new service where shipping companies can be alerted when containers stray into regions that they aren’t supposed to be in. From fraud detection to new insurance and geo-marketing business models, the possibilities are endless.”

said Laetitia Jay, Chief Marketing Officer.

Technical box: how Sigfox Geolocation works ?

Sigfox is rolling out the first global IoT network to listen to billions of objects broadcasting data, without the need to establish and maintain network connections. This unique approach in the world of wireless connectivity, where there is no signaling overhead, a compact and optimized protocol, and where objects are not attached to the network, drastically reduces energy consumption and costs.

In addition, Sigfox is a software based communications solution, where all the network and computing complexity is managed in the Cloud, rather than on the devices. This enables Sigfox to constantly improve its network capacities, and offer a wide range of new services that can be made available to its worldwide fleet of connected devices, by simple software upgrade.

Sigfox Geolocation is the first big data based Sigfox service, based on a Cloud intelligence, combining the signal strength indicators and machine learning algorithms. Resulting from two years of research and development, and thanks to the devices meta data available in the Sigfox Cloud, this development enables Sigfox to offer a geolocation service that does not require any hardware upgrade or software update, and has no impact on the energy consumption.