Altair IoT Chipset Simplifies Tracking of Devices - Ideal for Supply Chain/Logistics

Altair Semiconductor has announced the integration of HERE tracking and positioning software into its ALT1250 dual-mode LTE Cat-M1/NB-IoT chipset. The integration of the software – a product of HERE Technologies – a mapping & location services provider, is set to aid in improving visibility and traceability of a supply chain or logistics network.

Gaining visibility and traceability into a supply chain or logistics network has traditionally been difficult and expensive. This is chiefly because tracking an asset has usually entailed equipping it with a battery-hungry GNSS tracking device that would have a relatively short life depending on how frequently it would share its location. The synergies between HERE’s software and Altair’s advanced algorithms will enable HERE customers, system integrators and tracking device manufacturers to significantly reduce device time to market and provide hardware-based security. The two companies plan to reduce overall power consumption of an end-to-end tracker application by optimizing the way the device communicates with the cloud. The integration was demonstrated at Mobile World Congress Americas 2018.

The combination of HERE location technology for high-accuracy end-to-end tracking of assets and the ALT1250’s comprehensive IoT capabilities, will help customers create broad new enterprise business models as well as drive new efficiencies across their organizations. The technology’s low cost makes it a good fit for tracking indoors and outdoors in many scenarios. These include the tracking of non-powered factory or construction equipment, warehouse inventory, roll cages and packages moving through a logistics network. The technology enables long battery life, obviating the need to re-charge a device.

The ALT1250 is the market’s most highly integrated dual-mode Cat-M1/NB-IoT chipset. It includes a GNSS receiver, an RF front-end supporting all commercial LTE bands within a single hardware design, a hardware-based security framework and an internal application MCU subsystem. The integration of HERE tracking and positioning software means the chipset will be able to locate itself using the strength of cellular signals, even when it is not possible to obtain a GNSS fix. The chipset can take advantage of the ability of HERE to provide online and offline positioning based on its database of cellular towers.

The ALT1250 has the lowest power consumption available in the cellular IoT chipset market, thus significantly increasing battery-life and allowing for smaller and lower cost IoT devices. With HERE software integrated, it can, over a lifetime of years, provide tens of thousands of updates on its status, such as its current location and, if on the move, its route and ETA. When utilized together with HERE Tracking, a fast and flexible IoT location platform, customers have a complete tracking solution that works out of the box. This means a customer simply needs to sign up to the HERE Tracking on-boarding portal to register devices, define geo-fences and settings, and then monitor tracked assets via a web or mobile dashboard.