Indoor positioning: one of the many strands of Multi-access Edge Computing

Ian Scales
By Ian Scales

May 15, 2017

via Flickr © markhillary (CC BY 2.0)

via Flickr © markhillary (CC BY 2.0)

  • MEC trial married context and positioning to deliver targeted material
  • QCell claimed to be first 4G indoor system supporting multi-frequency and multi-mode
  • Claims capabilities will stimulate service innovation

China Mobile and ZTE say they have successfully trialed Multi-access Edge Computing (MEC) indoor positioning to an accuracy of 5 meters. Accurate enough to intelligently select product or marketing material to push at specific shoppers as they wander past in a department store, for instance.  

The China Mobile trial used ZTE’s QCell system - claimed to be the world’s first 4G indoor active distribution solution that supports multi-frequency and multi-mode (GSM/UMTS/LTE or CDMA/LTE) network deployment - and deployed it in Beijing’s Wanda Shopping Plaza.

Source ZTE

Source ZTE

It says open application programming interfaces (APIs) “were provided to transmit various third-party applications and content through network pipes, so that the diverse service requirements of indoor users could be met and the value of network pipes increased.

ZTE says the positioning solution allows carriers to offer precise indoor navigation that helps customers quickly find destinations, enhancing shopping experience and efficiency. The value analysis of target customers is also provided for sellers in accordance with the user-related heat map. In this way, sellers can push the advertisements of new goods, red envelopes of data volume, and shopping vouchers to attract high-value customers and implement data monetisation.       

It says the  solution effectively combines carriers' pipe capabilities with applications, helping stimulate service innovation.

ZTE is developing new MEC solutions involving NarrowBand IoT (NB-IoT) and enhanced Machine Type Communication (eMTC), as well as big video services, by cooperating with carriers. The MEC solutions implement the applications of 5G technologies in 4G networks as well as service transformation before 5G  

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