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flow monitoring


Smart passersby monitoring for mobility and crowd control management.


Mobility is a fundamental concern in urban, commercial and industrial areas. Having information about how people move in these environments improves mobility policies and organization.

Most solutions offer an occupation control, based on entrance and exit monitoring or total count in a certain area, but are unable to perform an individual traceability. This limitation comes both from technical and legal limitations and, when possible, is fairly complex to achieve.

However, knowing how the individuals are moving between monitored areas is a highly valuable information that in certain situations like the actual COVID-19 pandemic enables better decision making to assure more secure environments for people in all kind of areas.

The characteristics of the solution to achieve are the following:

  • Near real-time monitoring of crowds in certain locations
  • Individual traceability
  • Competitive prices
  • Information about relational flow between zones
  • High precision and reliable data
  • Low-cost, easy-to-install and highly scalable solution


Purple Blob has developed a mobility solution called Metis. This solution achieves most of the required characteristics, and the company is now extending the system to adapt it to the COVID-19 situation.

Metis is based on a sensor network that monitors wide areas, reporting the occupation of people in them. Moreover, the system also generates anonymous and unique identifiers of the people within their range, this allows for unique traceability of the movement between monitored zones.

Based on different technologies for both the detection of individuals and communication capabilities, the resulting system is a highly scalable solution, that can cover from malls to big cities.

The system respects the user’s privacy while remaining non-intrusive for the detected individuals, making it perfect for most use case scenarios. Lastly, for the actual COVID-19 situation, in which having information about both crowds and flow of people results in a powerful tool to avoid dangerous situations, Purple Blob is extending the system with thermal cameras. These cameras will detect potential infection threats and link this information with the identifiers that pass though the monitored zone, enabling an analysis of the potential risk to assist pandemic professionals.

Summarizing the solution characteristics:

  • Reports both the occupation and flow of people between zones
  • Can send these reports via multiple communication methods
  • Low-cost, easy-to-use and highly scalable solution
  • Includes a visualization and management platform
  • Can be configured by the user, allowing for personalized views and alarms
  • Includes premade mobility analysis, like flow and heatmaps
  • Easily integrable in more complex systems, like IoT platforms


  1. Deployment and configuration of all the sensors needed, as well as LoRaWAN® or WiFi gateways to assure the communications.
  2. Minimal configuration of the platform, mostly to locate each sensor and thus allowing its use without a GPS module.
  3. The LORIOT Network Server receives the data from the gateways and forwards it to the application server where the platform is running.
  4. The data is ingested by the platform, where it is analyzed to present it in visual dashboards that also allow for alarms. The user can configure both the visualizations and the alarms.
  5. In case the user requires a more complex analysis, the platform allows a structured download of the information in order to ingest them in other tools and platforms.

The return

For urban and rural environments , offers information about how and when are the citizens moving. This information can be used to detect crowdy or underused urban areas, necessity of new public transportation stations, effect of disruptive situations like construction sites and many other mobility problematics.

For commercial and industrial cases , the system offers information about crowdy areas and relation of attractiveness of certain locations. As an example, knowing how much people passes through a certain location can be used to set the value of the placement of a commerce.

Lastly, in healthcare situations like the actual COVID-19 pandemic, the solution can detect dangerous crowd situations, tag potential infection sources and monitor their flow between different zones, enabling a data-based risk control assessment.

In conclusion, the solution offers the following returns:

  • Usage of each zone on time and occupation matrixes
  • Flow and relations between different monitored locations
  • Individual traceability in a private and non-intrusive manner
  • Data visualization on configurable dashboards
  • Assessment of potential risks in healthcare situations
  • Highly scalability and interoperability