Google Maps Indoornavigation is not a technology, but a free service offered by Google. Google offers digital maps on which the user can also zoom into buildings. The service also recognizes different floors. To use the service, the relevant building plans must be submitted to Google. The service is not available in all countries.
- free of charge
- The user hands over his data sovereignty to Google
- Available only for commercial locations and not everywhere
Google relies on WLAN trilateration (with the known disadvantages) for positioning within the captured buildings and names a positioning accuracy of five to 15 meters. Points of interest, such as shops, can be created by the user (not the end user, but the department store management, for example).
Google also provides the appropriate interfaces so that the maps can be integrated into its own apps and websites. However, the data remains with Google: “The building plans and the data on the site visits can be removed from the Google Account. The data won’t be associated with you and your Google Account, but Google can still use the building plans and their data. This also includes “the data on the inspections”, i.e. customer data.
Google Maps indoornavigation in practice
In practice, however, the approach often proves to be too imprecise and unreliable, as testers complained. Moreover, the service, for which you have to upload a digital map of your building to the Google server, is by no means available to everyone interested: According to its own statement, Google is “currently concentrating on locations with heavy public traffic such as airports, shopping malls, stadiums and bus stops”.In fact, the buildings must be publicly accessible. Google speaks of “commercial locations”. This definition excludes premises and buildings. Asset tracking, indoor navigation and building information systems (GIS) are very promising location-based services, especially for large companies.