Technology takes GPS tracking one step further by tracking shopper’s habits through their shopping carts.
Everywhere you look, research teams are being compiled to utilize modern technology, including global positioning systems (GPS), for gathering important data. The latest use for this GPS tracking technology is in shopping carts. Not just one supermarket is using this technology, but in several locations in the world, and for different reasons.
The first is being used in New Zealand, with a device called the PathFinder. A supermarket in Auckland is using the GPS tracking device in shopping carts and hand-held baskets to track the shopper’s habits. It looks at data such as what departments the customer shops in, how they select groceries, and how much they spend. Most GPS tracking studies and projects inform the person they are being tracked, but not in this case.
The carts and baskets have GPS satellite tracking devices and batteries hidden under the handle of the basket or near the front of the shopping carts. The technology was invented by New World Victoria Park, with Jason Witehira at the head of the project. He told reporters he could log on to the program from any computer and watch the baskets or carts move through the supermarket. He says it has helped him change the store’s layout to become more efficient.
Shopping cart GPS tracking is also being used in the United States at Piggly Wiggly supermarkets, the very supermarket that invented the original shopping cart in 1937. Now the supermarket has taken it one step further by combining technology and convenience. There is a small tracking computer in each cart that looked at the route of the shoppers, how long it takes them to find what they need or make a selection, and how quickly they go through the supermarkets. The GPS tracking can also look at what order items were put into the cart.
With a nearby computer, researchers use this data to create personal shopping profiles of their customers. These customers, unlike in New Zealand, are aware of the GPS trackers. They even put in their loyalty card in the computer to identity them as the shopper. It helps the customer get connected with advertising that attracts them, based on their behavioral profile.
Piggly Wiggly hopes that it benefits them by knowing how to set up their stores, attract certain trends of shopping, and change with their moods. This data is expected to help customers and store owners alike, and more stores throughout the country may soon have GPS tracking.
Businesses today are finding that there are many unexpected benefits for using GPS tracking technology in vehicles and even on equipment. The construction industry is no different. In addition to the primary benefit of routing and traffic concerns, GPS tracking can help construction companies in quite a few additional ways, including those mentioned below.
Reduces Fuel Costs
Every penny counts in construction businesses. While fuel may not be the biggest expense your business faces, chances are good that it’s big enough that substantial savings would not go unnoticed. Think of all the fuel your construction businesses uses traveling from one jobsite to another or utilizing the heavy equipment needed for the job. GPS routing can help you find the shortest, most fuel efficient routes, all the while helping you avoid congested traffic situations that waste fuel.
Cut Fleet Maintenance Costs
One surprising feature of a solid GPS tracking system is that it can help you stay on top of your preventative maintenance for your fleet vehicles. Construction businesses have a lot of moving parts to keep track of.
Your GPS tracking system can monitor mileage in order to inform you (via email notification) when preventative maintenance repairs and services are required. It’s one less detail you’ll need to track on your own and taking care of the preventative maintenance can save significant maintenance and repairs down the line.
Proper preventative maintenance may even extend the life of your vehicles and heavy equipment. This saves your construction business even more money.
Track Employees’ Personal Use of Work Vehicles
Work vehicles are intended for use on the job and not as personal vehicles. Employees who use these vehicles for personal purposes not only present significant insurance and liability issues to your business, but also may cause costly tax-related issues as well.
Tracking employee use of work vehicles helps you let employees know you’re taking the problem seriously, which will serve to cut down on the problem. It also lets you know which employees are not taking company policies regarding personal use seriously, despite knowing the vehicles are monitored, so that you can take appropriate action.
Easily Recover Stolen Vehicles and Equipment
Vehicles aren’t the only things that can be tracked via GPS. Construction businesses have a lot of expensive machinery that makes attractive targets for thieves. GPS tracking for equipment facilitates the recovery of your equipment so that you can get back to work faster.
One more unintended benefit is that many insurance companies appreciate efforts construction business owners take to protect their assets and reward them with lower insurance rates. It’s a win-win situation for you!
Your construction business has a lot of details to see to on any given day. Let GPS tracking take some of the worry off your plate so you can focus on more profitable aspects of running your business.
Are you an owner or manager of a construction company? If so, call LiveView GPS today to learn about GPS tracking for construction companies,including GPS tracking for your construction equipment. 1.888.502.3636
Researchers have successfully tracked the movements of wild parrots in New Zealand using GPS telemetry, according to an article The Auk, published by the American Ornithologists’ Union.
The Purpose of the Study
The goal was to understand now the Kea, officially known as Nestor notabilis, behave, what migratory routes they use and when they interact with humans. Researchers were able to tell what they ate and when, and how they spent their time.
Prior to the use of GPS tracking technology, scientists found it very difficult to track parrots because they are naturally curious and refuse to follow completely standard routes.
Tough Birds, Tough Beaks
The study followed 14 birds, specially chosen based on their high intelligence and lack of fear. These impressive birds also had tough beaks. The GPS tracking device used on each bird had to encased in material that was strong enough to handle its pecking.
Prior to this, scientists had tried collars with the GPS units attached. The birds were able to peck them off in every case.
Each unit used in the study had a strong shell made of polymer that was soft enough not to irritate the bird–that is, more so than they already were by having the units strapped on in the first place. The units were put on harnesses, which were buckled onto each bird in a spot between its wings. This location was chosen because it didn’t interfere with flying.
Four of the birds were tough enough to cause damage to the harness. Two made a clean getaway and have never been found. Researchers discovered two others who successfully got out of their harnesses and out of the study.
The remaining birds, their attitudes unrecorded, made it through the study with harness and devices intact.
The Benefits of GPS Telemetry
GPS tracking devices have a wide range of uses, not just in tracking elusive birds. They are routinely used with cattle and sheep on ranches. Some pet owners are using them to find out what their dogs and cats do all day long when their people are at work.
Harness attachments like the one on the parrots have been used to track the activity of pigs, Tasmanian Devils and the Greylag Goose.
They are effective not just with animals. Companies that have truck fleets rely on the data provided by an advanced GPS tracking device on each vehicle.
GPS tracking technology has revolutionized the ability to find out where animals and vehicles are, providing a wealth of information for researchers and businesses.