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Posts Tagged ‘location aware services

My Idea of Next-Gen Location-aware services

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Given how busy we are/tend to be, you would have found yourself in one of the following situations.

  • I was right there and I forgot to ……
    I am supposed to buy/inquire about some product I’m planning on buying and I promised myself that next time I am anywhere near that place I will do it. Well guess what, I forgot; only to be reminded way after I was away from that place. And now its late to go back, let me do it another time.
  • I was right there and I didn’t know about ……
    I am a big fan of ‘so n so’ line of clothing [who have a store near by]. But I’m kinda low on GREEN as of now, will buy it if there is any good sale on it. I will keep checking their website and ads on newspaper for those deals until then. Fast-Forward a couple of weeks. I hear my friends/peers/neighbors talking about their recent shopping experience and how great the sale on ‘so n so’ was. Huh ? OMG I wasn’t aware of that sale, can’t believe I missed it.
  • I’m feeling lonely here in this new place, I wish I could find some company / a Date ……
    I’m in this totally new place, I don’t know anyone here. I came alone to this club thinking I could socialize and maybe find someone special, but it doesn’t seem to be going as planned. I can see so many people here but I am feeling shy and do not know how to approach nor am I aware as to who is willing to be approached.
    Meanwhile just a few clubs down the road. A young single lady engaged in the same monologue with herself.
  • In the 3rd scenario, is there a way to connect the both of them together ? Well technology seems to have the potential to play cupid. How ? Read on.

    The mobile devices i.e PDAs, Smartphones etc of the contemporary world are equipped with GPS functionality, WiFi / 3G connectivity acting as a premise to a whole new way of Advertising/Communication/Social Networking. Below is an account of my ideas on how we can overcome each of the above described scenarios [assuming that all these functionalities are enabled all the time]

  • Location-aware Reminders
    You start the application on your Mobile Phone/Smartphone. You start creating a Reminder, but unlike any other reminders we are so familiar with, you DO NOT specify the date/time to alert you. Instead you are taken to a map where you are prompted to mark a point-of-interest [POI] & specify the desirable radius around the same. What this basically means is that, you are telling the system to remind you when you are within the specified radius of your POI.
    For example
    POI : Social Security Office, Radius : 500 meters , Reminder : Collect SSN card
    What this translates to is ‘ Remind me to Collect SSN card when I am within 500 meters of Social Security Office ‘.
  • Location-aware Advertising
    From a user’s perspective
    You start the application on your mobile Phone/Smartphone. You specify what ads you are interested in, so that you can recieve notifications related to those. The application runs in the background and is always Aware of your location. You go shopping to a mall, DING! You are prompted of a discount sale that is going on right now at one of your favorite stores. You can choose to act on it by reading more information about the ad or you can just delete/ignore it. If your are feeling overwhelmed by the amount of ads on the air, then you have an option to be more specific.
    From the advertiser’s perspective
    If you are the owner of a store and want to AIR location-aware ads to people who subscribe to it, you have to 1st register on the system. The registration is completed after a few authentication checks and you are provided with an account. Using this account you can login to the system [which is a web application] and post ads. You can post ads which are limited in the amount of information permissible, like max no of characters, and an option to specify the duration of the ad. You are charged a minor fee for posting each ad, thus acting as revenue for the system.
  • Insta-Date / I-Stand-Alone
    You login to the system after registration, which involves certain authentication checks, and then post your profile for others to view. You have the option to make your profile visible to only your friends or those kinds you are interested in meeting.
    In the previously explained scenario all they have to do is register on the system and set their status as ‘ Available ‘. Using the location-aware capabilities on the smartphone, the system shows the list of all the ‘Available’ people to the user. He can go on and filter it based on a few criteria like sex, age, ethnicity etc. He looks that the other lady [as mentioned above] is also willing to meet new people. He sends her an invite to start communicating/chatting. She receives the request, she checks his profile then has an option to start a dialog or just ignore him.
  • Well I guess the technology just played cupid for the both of them.

    These are just a few of the ideas that I have engendered, there are many more ideas which can stem outta these. Well come to think of it there might already be systems of these kind or having some flavor of it, but this never stops me from ‘DREAMING ON’. I am planning to start creating these systems myself on Google Android, just hoping for the best.

    Having said all these I can confidently say that the future of Location-aware services is looking very promising, not to forget the Cool-Factor involved. Well what can I say, this is just the beginning of a new era of communication …

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    Written by supreeths

    March 21, 2009 at 2:32 AM