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TeleNav brings user-generated content to GPS

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TeleNav has added extra functionality to its latest version, just launched in the US, to allow users to rate restaurants and other businesses, as well as tell everyone how much, and where, they just paid for their petrol.

Version 5.2 should be available in the UK over the summer.

The current version already allows searching for local businesses, but the ability to rate those businesses is new, along with the ability to send someone a text message containing a location, which is automatically picked up by the TeleNav application running on their handset.

Given that Nokia also offers the ability to send locations, some interoperable standard would surely be a good idea.

The extensive use of A-GPS (Assisted GPS) in the US means users are familiar with paying a monthly subscription for their GPS service. A-GPS requires network operator managed servers to work. This income allows software companies such as TeleNav to maintain servers full of user-generated content. European operators have been much slower to implement A-GPS, leading phone manufacturers to implement stand-alone GPS where they've bothered.

The ability to search for petrol stations by price might not be a killer application for everyone, but it is a clear cost-benefit that any user can understand, and could well be the kind of application that drives GPS into every mobile phone in some form or another. ®

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