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An Improved Hierarchical WLAN Positioning Method Based on Apriori Knowledge

Department of Information Management, National Yunlin University of Science and Technology, Douliu 64002, Taiwan
Chunghua Telecom and Data Communications Business Group, Taipei 10048, Taiwan
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Electronics 2019, 8(5), 475;
Received: 7 April 2019 / Revised: 24 April 2019 / Accepted: 25 April 2019 / Published: 29 April 2019
(This article belongs to the Section Computer Science & Engineering)
PDF [2027 KB, uploaded 29 April 2019]


The hierarchical-based structure is recognized as a favorable structure for wireless local area network (WLAN) positioning. It is comprised of two positioning phases: the coarse localization phase and the fine localization phase. In the coarse localization phase, the users’ positions are firstly narrowed down to smaller regions or clusters. Then, a fingerprint matching algorithm is adopted to estimate the users’ positions within the clusters during the fine localization phase. Currently the clustering strategies in the coarse localization phase can be divided into received signal strength (RSS) clustering and 3D clustering. And the commonly seen positioning algorithms in the fine localization phase include k nearest neighbors (kNN), kernel based and compressive sensing-based. This paper proposed an improved WLAN positioning method using the combination: 3D clustering for the coarse localization phase and the compressive sensing-based fine localization. The method have three favorable features: (1) By using the previously estimated positions to define the sub-reference fingerprinting map (RFM) in the first coarse localization phase, the method can adopt the prior information that the users’ positions are continuous during walking to improve positioning accuracy. (2) The compressive sensing theory is adopted in the fine localization phase, where the positioning problem is transformed to a signal reconstruction problem. This again can improve the positioning accuracy. (3) The second coarse localization phase is added to avoid the global fingerprint matching in traditional 3D clustering-based methods when the stuck-in-small-area problem is encountered, thus, sufficiently lowered the maximum positioning latency. The proposed improved hierarchical WLAN positioning method is compared with two traditional methods during the experiments section. The resulting positioning accuracy and positioning latency have shown that the performance of the proposed method has better performance in both aspects. View Full-Text
Keywords: WLAN positioning; hierarchical positioning; fingerprinting; coarse localization; fine localiztion WLAN positioning; hierarchical positioning; fingerprinting; coarse localization; fine localiztion

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Fang, K.-T.; Lee, C.-T.; Sun, L.-M. An Improved Hierarchical WLAN Positioning Method Based on Apriori Knowledge. Electronics 2019, 8, 475.

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