Cellint’s systems take the signaling messages generated within the cellular network by all the phones in the network, and assig GPS coordinates to each data point in real time. In order to achieve that level of accuracy the system match the live signaling data from the network with maps the cellular signaling patterns along streets, roads and railways, which acts as a reference location database (instead of the cellular tower location). The mapping process includes recording physical journeys from crowd sourcing over the roads, railways and paths, in which each cellular signaling message is recorded with a GPS location reference. Once this location reference database is ready, the system will use it as follows:
The system tracks each specific anonymous phone, and by using a sequence of cellular messages the mobile phone generates, it correlates it to the exact route it is traveling on. Cellint’s systems has the ability to distinguish between parallel, close-by routes and lanes which are separated by some type of terrain.
Once a phone is correlated to a path, the system can measure the position of the phone accurately, similar to a virtual sensor in short intervals along the route, while tracking the same vehicle as it passes every virtual sensor
Every couple of location points provides an accurate travel time sample for that section. The system collects all the samples to continuously create a full traffic data picture for the monitored road
A special algorithm is used to derive slowdown alerts from that flow data.
Further analysis is conducted to determine where each phone’s owner lives, works, travel, how and why.
The system is designed to connect with any cellular network at a standard interface within the Mobile Switching Center (MSC). A standard probe is used to extract cellular network data from the control channel anonymous signals that are encrypted on the fly before stored in the database. All raw location data is kept protected within the cellular facilities, and only aggregated data is reported to customers. . Hence, no individually identifiable user data is exposed in anyway.
Cellint’s proprietary cellular location technology is the key to its superior location, mobility and traffic information. To get these accurate locations, the system doesn’t use the cell towers location as reference to position the phones, but rather a reference location database of road signatures, created by mapping the cellular network over the roads.
This mapping of the cellular network over the road/railway/paths is done by recording cellular data from the handset side while the phones are traveling, and record the cellular control messages, which are exchanged between the phone and the network while driving each road section. Each message is recorded with the GPS location of the phone when that message was received or transmitted by the handset. The sequence of messages is used by the system to identify the exact road on which the phone is traveling and pinpoint the exact coordinates over that road at intervals of a few hundred meters.
Since each building and each bridge creates more cellular signaling messages on the road (since the network needs to overcome this obstacle), the resolution is higher in urban environment, and the denser the area is, better is the resolution.
In the operating system, the PMS correlates mobile handset messaging sequences with the route signature to generate location fixes that can be used to trace the route, bearing and speed of the phones. In this process, Cellint employs its algorithms that create accurate location information. The output of the PMS include anonymous statistics of link speeds, travel times, slowdown alerts, Origin/Destination data (OD) and quantities, reported to the Cellint Central Traffic Server (CTS). Within the Central Traffic Server, Cellint maintains all the traffic applications required by its customers.
The system has full redundancy, based on two parallel production pipelines of data aggregation and computing. In case a problem occurs at the main system, the data is automatically reported from the alternate data feed, enabling the operator of the system to correct the problem and restore full redundancy without reducing system up time. This enables Cellint to comply with very high up-time requirements.
Since we operate from within the mobile carrier facility, Cellint’s platform can continue operation under extreme emergency scenarios, even when power is down and regular internet connectivity is lost
- Power – No field power connectivity requirements (like connecting sensors to power source) We can actually guarantee that we are power redundant, as the mobile carrier has 1-3 power redundancies to any point of their network.
- Data Connectivity – No required wire or wireless data connectivity to every sensor. We sit on the internet backbone and if we don’t have data connectivity then NO ONE has it.
The above points (power and data connectivity) are also a major concern for daily maintenance, system up time, security and privacy when using field sensors. These problems are not relevant to Cellint, which its servers are located behind the mobile carrier fire wall thus none of our (virtual sensors) can be hacked (unlike camera’s data, for example).
Unlike large sensor deployments, that can take years, Cellint can install thousands of virtual sensors within a few months only.