Otiom Vs Traditional GPS Tracking Devices For Dementia

Otiom is the world’s first medical device that communicates via Narrowband Internet of Things (NB-IoT), designed to prevent people with dementia from becoming lost. In this post, we are going to highlight the advantages of Otiom over traditional GPS tracking devices for dementia

Conventional GPS-trackers

Conventional GPS trackers are built around a GPS receiver, – such as a smart-watch or electronic shoe-sole, that is carried by the person with dementia.

Traditional GPS trackers usually transmit their location continuously (24/7) via 2G or 3G signals. Since GPS, 2G and 3G transmission all have high power consumption, GPS trackers often require charging on a daily basis.

Caregivers view the location of the person wearing the GPS tracker via a mobile app or computer. In most cases, caregivers are required to actively monitor the app or computer on a regular basis. This is less reliable and more labour intensive.

Many GPS tracking devices can appear to be affordable, however, they often come with subscription charges on top of the upfront cost, meaning that they are much more expensive in the long term.


Otiom uses Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) to determine outdoor locations. GNSS includes a large network of satellite systems from many different countries, including GPS, GLONASS, Galileo and Beidou.

The Otiom-tag transmits via the new Narrow Band – Internet of Things (NB-IoT) network. NB-IoT often has better coverage than GPS and uses up to 30 times less power.

Otiom also uses Home bases to provide coverage inside your buildings. These are small, cost-effective and low-powered Bluetooth transmitters, that are placed around the nursing home or private home, creating a virtual home zone. As long as the person wearing the Otiom-tag is within the home zone, they are deemed safe and the Otiom system is in a dormant, power-
saving mode.

When the person with the Otiom-tag leaves the home zone, the system is activated, and can be set up to send instant alarms and locations to caregivers. Caregivers can also manually activate the system and locate the resident, via the Otiom-app.

Due to its unique combination of technologies, the Otiom-tag can maintain battery power for much longer than GPS devices

Locating residents indoors

For indoor location, Otiom features a unique proximity sensor, embedded in the Otiom-app.
To locate a resident indoor, caregivers simply open the app and select the person they want to locate. When in Bluetooth range (up to 140 square metres), the app will indicate the distance to the person.

This is particularly useful if a resident with dementia is lost or hiding inside the nursing home.

Table of advantages of otiom over GPS tracking devices for dementia