SPREO’s wayfinding and navigation is available on any device including mobile applications (white-label or SDK), web browser applications for desktop and mobile, kiosks and digital displays, and chatbot, and is available with or without indoor location technology.
SPREO’s mapping technology serves as the foundation for our wayfinding and navigation system. Our aesthetically-pleasing and user-friendly floor and campus maps that are overlaid onto Google maps, combined with our points-of-interest system, indoor and outdoor pathway mechanism and routing algorithm allows for indoor-to-outdoor, building-to-building, and floor-to-floor routing and navigation.
Location-aware devices; non-location-aware devices
Wayfinding and navigation is available on location-enabled devices such as mobile phones as well as devices that do not have location services embedded such as stationary kiosks, web browsers, or mobile devices without location enabled.
Whether or not a device has location-aware services installed, a user’s location is necessary for wayfinding and navigation as it serves as the starting point for routing to a destination.
For location-enabled devices, GPS and SPREO’s indoor location technology yield a user’s location both indoors and outdoors. With this calculated location, combined with SPREO’s indoor maps, point-of-interest (POI) markers, pathways, and routing instructions, the user can precisely and accurately navigate from their actual current position to any location within the facility or campus without any prior knowledge of where they are located.
For devices that do not have location services such as stationary kiosks, web browsers, or mobile devices without location services, wayfinding and navigation is still possible by allowing the user to manually set their starting location from which routing will take place.
Pathway and routing mechanism
SPREO calculates and provides the shortest route from starting point to the destination. In complex facilities and campuses with multiple floors and buildings, the number of possible paths to a user’s destination grows exponentially with each new floor. When the number of permutations is so high, it is impossible for a computer to quickly analyze every path if sifting through every possible pathway. SPREO’s platform circumvents the need to sift through every possible path by employing a graph-algorithm that finds the shortest routes by means of geometric deduction.
3 approaches to mobile indoor wayfinding
SPREO offers three methods to provide an effective wayfinding and navigation experience for end-users.
Manual wayfinding and navigation delivers clients all of the features found in SPREO’s mapping platform but without the location-aware services. In this framework, users can manually input their starting location into the map to receive wayfinding routes to points of interest. Because manual navigation requires the user to manually input their own location, beacons or other indoor location technology is not used. Though this user experience lacks the benefits of location services, a manual wayfinding solution simplifies customer onboarding, streamlines the deployment process, and reduces the infrastructure fees and energy consumption.
Real-time wayfinding and navigation gives the user a consistently updated, live blue-dot experience similar to what a user may find on Google maps. A real-time solution requires a comprehensive deployment and maintenance plan.
On-demand wayfinding and navigation is similar to real-time as it brings location-awareness to the user experience. In this solution, the user’s location (blue-dot) is not constantly updated as the user engages the map features – the user must trigger location by utilizing the “locate me” function or initializing a navigation route. When the users triggers location, the app will calculate the user’s location and place the blue-dot on the map. To update this location, the user must trigger location again. This solution allows for a less sophisticated location infrastructure which reduces deployment and system maintenance complexities, as well as reduces battery drainage on the mobile devices.
Additional Wayfinding Features
Indoor to outdoor, outdoor to indoor
When a user is wayfinding and navigating from indoor to outdoor (or vice versa) or building to building, SPREO smoothly transitions between indoor location technology to global positioning system (GPS) technology. An outdoor campus map paired with Google maps provides necessary wayfinding elements such as landmarks, which allows for an intuitive wayfinding user experience across large campuses and facilities.
‘Navigate from home’ feature
SPREO’s wayfinding and navigation solution allows users to navigate from outside the campus or facility (such as from their home) to their destination. When a navigation such as this is triggered within a SPREO-embedded mobile application, users are prompted to select a third party GPS navigation application that is installed on their device such as Waze, Google Maps, or Apple Maps to navigate them to the parking lot nearest their destination. Once the third-party application has been closed, the SPREO-embedded application will continue the route through the campus and indoors to the destination.
‘Plan my trip’ feature
Users have the ability to input multiple destinations into the SPREO platform, and will then have an entire visit efficiently mapped and routed. The list of destinations can be sorted to form the shortest route from POI to POI, or can be sorted by a user-specified order.
Through integrations with third-party scheduling software such as EPIC systems in the hospital industry, the “Plan my trip” feature can be auto-populated based on the appointment a patient has scheduled.
‘Save my parking’
When arriving to a facility or campus by vehicle, a user can utilize the “Save my parking” feature to mark their parking spot on the map. This feature, when prompted, stores the latitude and longitude coordinates (if outdoors) or the XY coordinates (if within a parking garage) and places a visual marker on the map. The user can use this feature to create a route back to their parking spot once their visit to the facility or campus has been completed.
As this feature only records the coordinates of the parking spot, no integration with a parking system is necessary. Moreover, this feature does not interfere with established parking systems and can be used in conjunction with them.