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Pole Star Delivers Unique, Scalable And Highly-Accessible Indoor Positioning Services

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Pole Star is a company specializing in providing indoor location services to anyone anywhere in the world. Their multi-platform positioning technology is easily adoptable by any facility offering inexpensive and fast setup, easy maintanance and most importantly accurate positioning for its users. To learn more about their platform we sat down with Christian Carle, CEO and Founder of Pole Star:

Christian Carle

Q: How would you describe Pole Star in your own words?

A: At Pole Star we understood before anyone else, it was imperative to release personal mobility by making it inside as well! We want to make everyone personal and professional life simple by offering a seamless personal mobility.

Indoor Location based services are not anymore a “nice to have’ feature but a “must have” for most of large venue owners and managers. Pole Star Company based in the US and in Europe has delivered more than 1500 different venues worldwide. Active on the market since 2008, Pole Star is a pioneer with a strong leadership in the indoor location domain. We bring solid and reliable solution to solve the issue of the continuity of location based services between outdoor environment, thanks to GPS and Galileo satellite systems and the Indoor environments, where satellite signals are inoperative being degraded or simply unavailable.

Location is not only a matter of where am I, which is already good and sometimes critical to know, but it is also a matter of valuable data: who are my visitors, what their centers of interest are, what their behaviors are and how to target them with non-intrusive and relevant information, at the right time and the right place!

With 500 % of growth over the last 4 years, 20 % of monthly growth of number of users and 200 000 daily hits on our platform during the month of February, we are on the way to make the Indoor location global. Pole Star vision is to make it by offering global coverage, fast an easy integration means and seamless indoor/outdoor transitions for all large and complex venues welcoming large number of people.

Pole Star emancipates personal mobility by allowing it to truly go inside.

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Q: What is unique about Pole Star’s technology and how does it stand out from competition?

A: Pole Star solution is a mix of innovation, cutting edge technologies and deep expertise and field experience. With its unrivalled track record, Pole Star acquired a valuable field experience and built a worldwide network of value added partners. Thanks to that, Pole Star can deliver its solution everywhere and provide assistance globally.

There is no “one” technology answering to 100 % of the market needs. This is why the Pole Star core location engine hybridizes the data extract from multiple mobile devices sensors, fuses the data from all the available motion sensors. Because we don’t need and we don’t want our partners and customers lost their time in becoming Indoor Technology specialists, we paid a lot of attention to designs a cloud platform to make the implementation and integration of the Indoor location as simple as GPS. We made the Indoor location services, scalable and accessible by everyone and everywhere!

Pole Star solution does not require a heavy and costly infrastructure and can rely on available signals of opportunity such as Bluetooth or Wifi. Indeed, compatible with iOS, Android and Windows 10 mobile, the Pole Star solution works in every kind of environments with or without additional light and autonomous infrastructure, complies with every kind of use cases. The Pole Star technology can be integrated into dedicated mobile apps or third party mobile apps. It works in foreground and background and can be woke up automatically.

This is why we can say that the uniqueness of the solution is based on the flexibility, the performances and its simplicity. The quality of the location data we make available to our customers paved the way of huge value generation whatever the use case.

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Q: Who is your ideal client and why?

A: At Pole Star we love all our customers, partners and integrators. The larger, the bigger and the most complicated campuses are our best play ground. Multiple buildings, multiple storeys, indoor/outdoor transition, deep indoor, mezzanines, lift, escalator, underground are what we like. Shopping Malls and stores, Retail, Corporate campuses and Office buildings, transportation hubs, hospitals, industry etc. are few of our best verticals.

The solution has been designed to address multiple use cases. The Indoor Location based services are numerous and the higher the number of use cases for a venue the greater the value for our client. Implementing our Indoor location solution in a venue to power a mobile app for the visitors, another one for the security of the professional working in the same place and a third one to track mobile assets such as trolleys, wheel chairs, or tools are what we love above all things.

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Q: Can you give us more insights into your products?

A: The Pole Star solution is branded NAO. The NAO solution is a Device centric solution. This means that the precise location is computed on board the mobile device in real time. It was much more challenging but it is much more efficient. To make it simple, it makes this solution robust and highly available since it does not required any data connection. It also serves to guarantee the user privacy.

The NAO suite is composed of 3 components. 1/ The NAO SDK (Software Development Kit) which contains the advanced core Location Engine. 2/ the NAO Cloud platform, enabling to set up, to deploy a new project, to supervise the performances, to monitor the infrastructure, to maintain and update the services. 3/ the NAO BlueSpot, a proprietary autonomous BlueTooth low energy (BLE) beacon. NAO BlueSpot is a highly robust beacon with a long lasting and industrial grade batteries, iBeacon & Edystone compatible but of course a little bit more than that… For the history books, Pole Star engineers were once again visionary. Indeed, we released the first NAO BlueSpot in March 2002 in our lab in California and Apple introduced its iBeacon protocol almost one year later at the Apple Worldwide Developers Conference in 2013.

Through the advanced NAO cloud platform and thanks to dedicated APIs, several level of services are made available to the integrators and/or to the mobile app developers. The location (the blue dot on the map enabling the way finding and step by step indoor navigation); the precise geofencing enabling to set up sub areas and define actions when users are entering, exiting or staying inside; the people tracking; the asset tracking services; the Indoor location analytics are the services we are making available to our ecosystem, partners and clients to contribute to the global coverage and massive adoption of the Indoor Location services.

Q: What are your plans for next four months?

A: We are permanently improving our solution to comply with market evolution and expectations. The MWC 2017 in Barcelona was the occasion to introduce our new services dedicated to professional market (BtoB): People tracking and Asset tracking. The next 4 months will see the first commercial introductions of these new services on the market. We will also accelerate the market penetration in the Middle East and Asiapac regions where we recently signed a contract for a smart city implementation project.

Last but not least, Pole Star is organizing every 3 to 4 months the Connect Day. The Connect Day is a round table and a networking event aiming at cross fertilizing our ecosystem of customers, integrators and partners. The next Connect Day will take place in Redwood City (San Francisco Bay area) on the 19th of April from 6pm to 9pm. The next Connect day will focus on important questions raised by the massive adoption of location based services: Privacy and Security: Barrier or opportunity for mass adoption of Indoor Location based Services! The next Connect Day will involve our ecosystem and experts in these fields. Hope to welcome you there.

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