A minimalistic optical sensing device for the indoor localization is proposed to estimate the relative position between the sensor and active markers using amplitude modulated infrared light. The innovative insect-based sensor can measure azimuth and elevation angles with respect to two small and cheap active infrared light emitting diodes (LEDs) flickering at two different frequencies. In comparison to a previous lensless visual sensor that we proposed for proximal localization (less than 30 cm), we implemented: (i) a minimalistic sensor in terms of small size (10 cm 3), light weight (6 g) and low power consumption (0.4 W); (ii) an Arduino-compatible demodulator for fast analog signal processing requiring low computational resources; and (iii) an indoor positioning system for a mobile robotic application. Our results confirmed that the proposed sensor was able to estimate the position at a distance of 2 m with an accuracy as small as 2-cm at a sampling frequency of 100 Hz. Our sensor can be also suitable to be implemented in a position feedback loop for indoor robotic applications in GPS-denied environment.