Wi-Fi Positioning System

What Does Wi-Fi Positioning System Mean?

A Wi-Fi positioning system is a system that works to locate users of wireless networks through their wireless access points. These systems may complement or substitute for GPS systems, or use GPS data to track users.


Techopedia Explains Wi-Fi Positioning System

One benefit to Wi-Fi positioning systems is that they can work where a GPS system cannot, such as in some indoor spaces. As a general technology, WPS is now a common part of many mobile device services. Many attribute the origin of this kind of system to a company called Skyhook Wireless, which began to pioneer software using Wi-Fi signals to locate devices around the turn of the millennium.

A Wi-Fi positioning system can be used to identify Wi-Fi hotspots, or to locate signals from a particular user device. Some of the issues around this technology include privacy concerns, where users want to be able to opt out of Wi-Fi positioning system features so that they cannot be easily located by administrators.


Related Terms

Margaret Rouse

Margaret is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical business audience. Over the past twenty years, her IT definitions have been published by Que in an encyclopedia of technology terms and cited in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine, and Discovery Magazine. She joined Techopedia in 2011. Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages.