Zones

The zones are one of the most powerful feature of RTLS. They simply transform area into a smart space, where virtual geo zones and accurate positioning data allows to trigger API events. The event contain the information about tag ID whether tag entered or leaved a zone and time stamp. This simple information enables to implement dozens of use-cases providing real-time added value for optimization, statistics and decision making.  

Here are some examples applying zones:

      • In Logistics, you may want to automate asset flow, eventually control the pick-by process among defined areas. Or you may not track the asset but the carrier by enabling the forklift tracking. You may also add extra safety once a forklift approach the dangerous zones which could be i.e. close to crossroad with high shelves, then warning light might be triggered to prevent injuries. Please read Budweisercase study here.


      • In Sports, you might want to know how long a player has stayed within his main territory - i.e. ice hockey deference player around blue line vs. other quadrants of hockey rink. 



      • In Retail, zones can be applied to discover insights such as how long is the average queue in front of cashier or if reasonable number of shopping trolleys have stayed in the selected area for longer period of time, so probably there is really interested product. This knowledge can be used for shelves rental valuation and further marketing.  



Other applications may include safety and security, where you want to ensure that your workers or employees don’t enter life-threatening or otherwise hazardous places by using Zones. There are also many other use cases, where Zones can be utilized.

Zones Set Up


There are just three simple steps to create Zones:

  • Draw a Zone – Zones can be drawn within Sensmap or via appropriate zones REST API.
  • Subscribe to a Tag or Zone – WebSockets provide a real-time interface for Zone notifications. You need to subscribe to a particular Tag or Zone.
  • Get Notified – After subscription, you will receive the position information from the Tag including the Zone information as well or from a Zone itself.
In order to use Zones, upload to Sensmapserver via REST must be enabled. To enable this feature, go to RTLS Manager -> RTLS Server -> Position Data Output -> Upload to Sensmapserver and select REST.

Draw Zones in Sensmap

Let’s say we want to create a Zone in a close proximity to the basketball hoop:

  1. Go to RTLS Studio - > Sensmap -> RTLS tab -> Zones and click on the  button:



  2. Draw the zone. It can have an arbitrary polygon shape:



  3. Name the Zone as you wish and select the type:



    And click on “Save”.

  4. Your Zone is now ready to use:



    As stated before, you can create as many zones as you like. Some of them may even lie on top of each other. Let’s say you want to create another zone, right under the basketball hoop:



  5. Your newly created Zones will now automatically inform you, when a Tag enters them. The color of the notification will also match the Zone type:




Zones Notification in WebSockets API 

User can manually subscribe to a Tag or a Zone and receive information about Zone entrance.  The user can choose if he wants to subscribe to a specific Tag or to a specific Zone to receive data about Zone entrance.

Data received from WebSockets have information about Zone(s) entering, for example a Tag with an ID of 18 is entering a Danger zone (with Zone ID 100 and name my_danger_zone), which is located in a Building with an ID of 7 on a Plan called my_plan at the given time. 

Note that the Tag can enter multiple zones at once.


Example:
{
	"body": {
		"id": "18",
		"zones": [{
			"id": "100",
			"type": "danger",
			"name": "my_danger_zone",
			"feed_id": "7",
			"plan": "my_plan",
			"at": "2016-10-18 15:02:07.610"
		}],
		"datastreams": [{
			"id": "posX",
			"current_value": " 6.48",
			"at": "2016-10-18 15:02:07.610"
		}, {
			"id": "posY",
			"current_value": " 2.32",
			"at": "2016-10-18 15:02:07.610"
		}, {
			"id": "clr",
			"current_value": " 0.00",
			"at": "2016-10-18 15:02:07.610"
		}]
	},
	"resource": "\/feeds\/18"
}

Zones management API

More information about API related to zones can be found in API section.