Feeds

GPS becomes more than a back-seat driver

Telmap shares locations, while Vodafone dodges traffic

New hybrid storage solutions

Vodafone has announced a deal with TomTom to develop a co-branded product for avoiding traffic jams, just as Telmap launches version 3 of its software, with the needs of the pedestrian in mind.

With less than half a dozen GPS-equipped handsets on sale in the UK we're clearly in the very early stages of any location-based revolution, and with operators mysteriously reluctant to embrace A-GPS (which requires network support, but is cheaper) the functionality is likely to remain the preserve of high-end devices for a while.

But this hasn't prevented Telmap from launching its latest version with enhanced mapping for those walking, as well as the ability to send location information over SMS - to other Telmap users at least.

Telmap has been trying to get operators interested in branding their own mapping services for a while, but with little success. Now it's selling through operator portals, to users who understand the value of location-based services even if their operators don't.

Operators seem reluctant to embrace location services until a sufficient member of handsets support it, but the handsets won't come until the operators ask for them; leading to a chicken-and–egg situation which is going to need cracking.

Once users have GPS they certainly use it. Oren Nissim, CEO of Telmap, reckons US networks have seen a 30 to 40 per cent activation rate on GPS-equipped handsets, and 40 per cent is normally the rate at which a technology is considered worth bundling into handsets as standard.

That's certainly the kind of adoption rate Vodafone will be looking for before launching its service with Tom Tom. Scheduled for the first half of 2008, the details are vague but such a schedule could well be an indication that Vodafone is planning an A-GPS service, thus opening the way for cheaper location services in the UK, and applying pressure on the other operators to follow suit.

Vodafone wasn't available for comment on the matter, at least not yet. ®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
Phones 4u slips into administration after EE cuts ties with Brit mobe retailer
More than 5,500 jobs could be axed if rescue mission fails
'Serious flaws in the Vertigan report' says broadband boffin
Report 'fails reality test' , is 'simply wrong' and offers ''convenient' justification for FTTN says Rod Tucker
This flashlight app requires: Your contacts list, identity, access to your camera...
Who us, dodgy? Vast majority of mobile apps fail privacy test
Apple Watch will CONQUER smartwatch world – analysts
After Applelocalypse, other wristputers will get stuck in
Shades of Mannesmann: Vodafone should buy T-Mobile US
Biting the bullet would let Blighty-based biz flip the bird at AT&T
Drag queens: Oh, don't be so bitchy, Facebook! Let us use our stage names
Handbags at dawn over free content ad network's ID policy
Blockbuster book lays out the first 20 years of the Smartphone Wars
Symbian's David Wood bares all. Not for the faint hearted
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile
Data demand and the rise of virtualization is challenging IT teams to deliver storage performance, scalability and capacity that can keep up, while maximizing efficiency.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.