by Mike Masnick

Location Based Services Becoming A Reality

from the slowly...-but-surely dept

Now that more and more cars are coming with built in navigation systems, they may no longer be necessary. Lots of companies have been working on building navigation systems for mobile phones, and this review of such a system from Televigation on a Nextel phone suggests that they may be ready for primetime - especially considering the price differential between a $2,000 in-dash system and a $6/month system on your phone. While the in-dash system includes a bigger screen, and potentially more features, the fact that the mobile phone can be used anywhere (such as a rental car) and that all the heavy lifting occurs on a server (where the data is more likely to be up-to-date) may suggest that in-dash navigation systems don't have much of a future. What's more likely, of course, is that via Bluetooth, or some similar technology, such applications on a mobile phone will be connected to the in-dash display (and the vehicle's speakers) to make the overall navigation experience adjust to the situation. As the article suggests, this is only the beginning of location-based services in mobile phones, but by piggy-backing on a service that people understand already, it will make it easier to gain more widespread adoption. After that, additional value added features will start to appear.

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  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 12 Apr 2004 @ 3:04pm

    No Subject Given

    I think a big problem with this setup will be that when you're out of your cell phone coverage area, you have no way to communicate with the server. So far, non-analog cell coverage is way far from universal and, chances are, you'll be left out to dry probably right where you'd need directions the most: when you're out somewhere way out there, trying to find the nearest gas station. Aside from helping you drive through unfamiliar cities, which is definitely great, this system will probably be fairly useless for quite a while.

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