Feeds

Spotigo promises Wi-Fi mapping within 5 metres

'It says we're...in the airport'

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

German Wi-Fi specialist Spotigo has managed to compile a Wi-Fi radio map of London and other major European cities, enabling it to locate any Wi-Fi device within five metres - and it promises to have the rest of Europe mapped within a year.

Using the Spotigo database any Wi-Fi device can compare the locally-available Wi-Fi hotspots with known locations and work out where it is, offering location information within seconds rather than the minutes it can take to get a GPS fix.

Using hot-spots for location purposes is nothing new - the idea has been around for a decade or so. The problem has always been building up, and maintaining, the database of access points. Spotigo has relationships with wireless ISPs that provide it with 100,000 punters around Europe with GPS-equipped handsets who are logging every access point and location, feeding into the database.

Google Mobile Maps does a similar thing with its MyLocation service, using cellular base stations instead of Wi-Fi, but that makes it accurate to half a mile or so compared to Spotigo's claimed five metres.

In the early days of location-based services many technologies and techniques were suggested, but the ever-decreasing cost of GPS hardware has driven all but a few out of business. Spotigo reckons that the inability to use GPS indoors, and the time it takes to get a fix, will give it the edge. It hints that it'll be embedding the software into a handset from a major manufacturer very soon.

Of course, once Galileo is up and running the problems with satellite systems will be mitigated to some extent, and even GPS keeps improving. So Spotigo is going to have to move fast if it's going to prove that Wi-Fi is a sensible way of locating yourself. ®

Security for virtualized datacentres

More from The Register

next story
Brit telcos warn Scots that voting Yes could lead to HEFTY bills
BT and Co: Independence vote likely to mean 'increased costs'
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
New 'Cosmos' browser surfs the net by TXT alone
No data plan? No WiFi? No worries ... except sluggish download speed
Radio hams can encrypt, in emergencies, says Ofcom
Consultation promises new spectrum and hints at relaxed licence conditions
Blockbuster book lays out the first 20 years of the Smartphone Wars
Symbian's David Wood bares all. Not for the faint hearted
Bonking with Apple has POUNDED mobe operators' wallets
... into submission. Weve squeals, ditches payment plans
'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
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.
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.
Security and trust: The backbone of doing business over the internet
Explores the current state of website security and the contributions Symantec is making to help organizations protect critical data and build trust with customers.
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.