GPS Connected Trackers – A Simple Idea Driving Innovation

At first glance putting GPS into a portable battery powered IoT device seems like a cool idea but it’s an idea so simple that’s easy to dismiss as a novelty. If you take the time look past is basic use cases of tracking my dog or loved one you’ll begin to see that devices like the Samsung Connected Tag that was launched at SDC 2017 in San Francisco will be drive business innovation.

The Samsung Connected Tag has an eSIM so it uses cellular networks for tracking and comes with 1 week of battery life. Unlike those cheap Bluetooth tracking tags which need to be paired with your phone and hence the range is very short, the Samsung Connect Tag has a much longer range without the need of being paired to a smartphone.

The Connect Tag runs on a lightweight Tizen RT based OS and it’s the world’s first product to utilize Narrowband technology (NB-IoT, Cat.M1). With NB-IoT, the tracker has access to location services over the internet using cellular telecommunication bands. This technology was suppressed due to lack of the right infrastructure in the past, but it now seems the infrastructure setbacks are finally solved and hence Samsung has taken the bold step to make an actual consumer product. The usage of NB-IoT technology helps the Connect Tag to significantly reduce battery usage and hence Samsung has rated its battery life to seven days on a single charge. The Samsung Connect Tag hence has the capability for both indoor and outdoor positioning with the help of GPS, WiFi and Cell ID.

The connect tag’s location can be accessed via user’s Android (only) M or above smartphone and you can get timely notifications or even set geo-confinements so that when the Connect Tag moves out of those boundaries, you get a notification. Those who carry the Connect Tag can also trigger a notification to the owner about their location.

The connect tag’s location can be accessed via user’s Android (only) M or above smartphone and you can get timely notifications or even set geo-confinements so that when the Connect Tag moves out of those boundaries, you get a notification. Those who carry the Connect Tag can also trigger a notification to the owner about their location.

IoT-enabled asset tracking is playing a greater role in the modern economy than ever before. Fleet management is the obvious industry but many industries are using this technology to drive innovation.

  • The travel industry has implemented luggage tracking
  • Agriculture/Conservation: Livestock and wildlife tracking
  • eMobility solutions like car or scooter sharing
  • Industrial asset tracking & Supply chain efficiency (pallet, crate or container tracking)
  • Compliance reporting

To make the most of asset tracking solutions business will have to implement a digital strategy that will include analytics and data processing tools so they can gain insight from the data. Analyzing real-time tracking data could decrease fuel and storage costs and increasing automation can free up employees allowing you to do more with your existing workforce.

The Connect Tag is aimed at the consumer market, but it allows small businesses to access technology that might only be reserved for enterprise relationships. It’s cool that you can use it to trigger your lights, but it would be even cooler if you could use it to streamline your small business.

Samsung has not mentioned any pricing or availability of the Samsung Connect Tag yet, but it will be first rolling out to South Korea followed by more markets in the future.