That can help reduce missed delivery deadlines and save time and money, according to UPS. Drivers with misloaded packages "often have to travel miles out of their way to correct the mistakes," the company said.
UPS expects the beacons to reduce misloads by 70 percent.
The company plans to have the beacons installed at more than 300 of its locations in the United States this year, reaching 47 percent of its U.S. package trucks. It also plans to expand the technology to its international operations.
While “off-the-shelf” beacons had too broad of a signal to differentiate between trucks lined up next to each other during loading, UPS says it worked to get customized beacons with a tighter range and longer battery life.
The idea behind the patent application is that other companies may also be able to use the technology for loading vehicles or other functions.