CrowdScan accurately captures crowds


Cleverly placed sensors from Antwerp-based start-up CrowdScan monitor and analyse crowd density in real time in a fully GDPR-friendly and highly accurate manner.

Crowd control has been around for some time. Large public events, underground stations or other public places spring to mind. But the results are mostly based on experience and subjective assessments. Manual counting is insufficiently accurate. The analysis of smartphones, watches or other devices connected to Bluetooth or Wi-Fi may be reliable in terms of movements, however, it is not in terms of crowd density. Moreover, surveillance cameras can be an invasion of privacy.

In 2020, three academics and a police commissioner decided there was room for improvement. They joined forces to perfect the technology. From this emerged the start-up CrowdScan, a spin-off of imec and the University of Antwerp. The latter provided an innovative solution based on sensors of radiometric waves that transmit information every 10 seconds. For example, every time a person walks through the wave and thus disturbs the signal, their intensity changes. The sensor captures the disturbed signal, which is a measure of the density of a crowd.

And all this in real time, with respect for privacy and 95% true to reality.