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MachineQ launches hybrid BLE and LoRaWAN solution for indoor asset tracking

Comcast-owned MachineQ has released a real-time location system (RTLS) for indoor asset tracking using Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) and LoRaWAN. The hybrid IoT solution appears to utilise BLE for indoor RTLS, enabling assets to be pinpointed at three metres, and LoRaWAN to backhaul the RTLS positional data to and from the cloud. The solution keeps data separate from the corporate Wi-Fi network, said MachineQ.

Philadelphia-headquartered MachineQ called its new tracking offer an “end-to-end IoT solution”, providing live data on indoor inventory, equipment, and moveable assets. It claimed to offer a “differentiated, scalable… capability [compared] to [rival] incumbent radio frequency identification (RFID) options”, listing specific advantages in terms of latency (“real-time”), accuracy (“sub-room level”), power “long battery life”, and price (“overall cost-effectiveness”).

It quoted forecasts that the IoT tracking market will account for over 90 percent of all connected enterprise and industrial solutions by 2030. The fact it runs on BLE to gather positioning data and LoRaWAN to carry it to/from the cloud, staying separate of corporate Wi-Fi networks, means lower “security concerns” and faster deployments, the LoRaWAN specialist stated. It is targeting healthcare, life sciences, logistics, manufacturing, plus other industries.

It has signed with an unnamed “global pharmaceutical biotech company”, it said, to track assets across more than 1,000 “labs” on an 850,000 square-foot campus. The firm expects a full ROI in “less than a year”, said MachineQ – “by saving millions… on asset repurchasing costs, helping finance teams to optimise their budgets and working capital utilisation, and eliminating maintenance contracts on lost and decommissioned inventory”.

MachineQ’s tracking solution has been deployed easily by in-house staff at the biotech outfit, it added, furthering lowering the ‘cost of ownership’. The solution integrated with its enterprise resource planning (ERP) system, enabling all departments to access live data about its on-site inventory. MachineQ operates a public LoRaWAN network in the US.

Steve Salata, vice president and general manager of MachineQ, commented: “This RTLS offering is part of our growing business strategy to further develop end-to-end solutions. Having the hardware, software, connectivity, and deployment all offered by one provider enables enterprises to quickly deploy IoT solutions and realise value.”

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