From shared bicycles to bank cards and unmanned patrol vehicles, China's home-grown BeiDou navigation system has increasing numbers of applications linked to the everyday life.
Precise positioning is key to users of shared bikes, said Xu Xiangbin, deputy general manager of Techtotop Microelectronics Science and Technology Ltd, a supplier of chips for Mobike, a Chinese bike-sharing company.
The chips support the BeiDou Navigation Satellite System (BDS).
Bank cards containing such chips, to prevent them from being used by strangers, were displayed at the Eighth China Satellite Navigation Conference held in Shanghai from Tuesday to Thursday.
The solution, jointly developed by Allystar Technology and China UnionPay, can record the location information of each transaction through the high-precision positioning technology.
"The location information is very important for financial transactions, and prevention of telecommunication fraud," said Ge Chen, business development director of Allystar Technology.
BDS can also be used to carefully examine the performance of applicants in drivers' certificate tests, according to Beijing StarNeto Technology Corporation.
Using the navigation technology, the company and its partner have jointly developed an unmanned patrol vehicle with monitoring cameras in cooperation. The vehicles have been tested in residential communities in Shenzhen.
They can assist security guards in extreme weather conditions, said the company.
Industry insiders expect that BDS will have more applications in areas such as agriculture and urban underground pipeline networks.
The output value of China's satellite navigation and locating services totaled 210 billion yuan (30.5 billion U.S. dollars) in 2016, with BDS contributing more than 30 percent of that value.
The sector is forecast to have about 400 billion yuan in annual output value by 2020.