Location-Based Services

Apple patent points to real-time location tracking

Apple patent points to real-time location tracking

In the ‘Messages’ app on your iPhone, it’s possible to see where the people you’re chatting with are on a map, should they share their location. The feature was touted as a reason we should all have Family Sharing groups, as keeping track of each other is sometimes critical. Apple’s Find My Friends app is central for letting you know where all your contacts may be on a map, and a newly granted patent takes the location sharing much further, possibly allowing for location tracking.

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Twitter partners with Foursquare for better location tagging

Twitter partners with Foursquare for better location tagging

You have been able to include your location within tweets for quite some time, but that feature is about to get a lot more contextual, and quite a bit smarter. In a deal with Foursquare, which will see Twitter gain access to Foursquare’s impressive location knowledge base, your location tags will soon provide the name of businesses you’re at, or landmarks you’re near. Users will also get the ability to monitor the places they’ve been by tapping the link associated, which brings up tagged tweets from others.

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Shazam looks to access camera for more context

Shazam looks to access camera for more context

If you find yourself looking to Shazam for song recognition routinely,you already know how capable it is. The listening app is typically pretty adept at finding that song you can’t quite place, and even makes itself aware of what certain TV commercials are talking about. Instead of just listening, Shazam might also want to take a look at what is going on. Show Shazam what you’re looking at through your phone’s camera, and you might get a wealth of info.

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Ad company’s drones are tracking mobile locations in LA

Ad company’s drones are tracking mobile locations in LA

Personal drones are once again a hot topic in the media, but this time in a not so favorable light. Recent events, like the drone that landed at the White House and the FAA's proposed rules, have cast drones in a negative light. This latest news might very well sour the taste buds of the public even more. Several drones flying over San Fernando Valley in Los Angeles have been reported to be tracking smartphone and tablet locations. Their purpose? To eventually serve ads to mobile device owners.

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‘Local Guides’ now baked into Google Maps, could be bad for Yelp

‘Local Guides’ now baked into Google Maps, could be bad for Yelp

Do you know what a Google ‘Local Guide’ is? It’s the latest re-branding of Google’s community outreach program, once dubbed “City Experts”, which was previously led by teams of Googlers actually doing stuff in your city. The ‘Local Guides’ program was announced last month, but google is getting serious about their crowdsourced restaurant review program. The feature is now baked straight into the Maps app, and apparently resides in both iOS and Android versions of Google Maps. It also steps right on Yelp’s toes.

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Super Bowl weekend gets ‘beaconized’ courtesy of Gimbal

Super Bowl weekend gets ‘beaconized’ courtesy of Gimbal

As the sporting world steadies its gaze on Phoenix this weekend, there’s more than just a Super Bowl going on. The event, once just a game to decide the champions of the NFL, has morphed into a festival. Much like the NFL has grown, so has their coup de grace. If you’re weaving your way through the festivities orbiting the Super Bowl this weekend, you might even find your phone is getting in on the action, helping you find great stuff to do.

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Facebook testing ‘Place Tips’ location-based service in New York

Facebook testing ‘Place Tips’ location-based service in New York

Context is important, and Facebook knows it. Scale is also important, but Facebook already has that one figured out with their billion-plus users. Combine the two, and you just might have a formula for success on several different levels. In New York, Facebook has placed beacons around the city in an attempt to better understand the locations of their users. Their reason? A new feature in the Facebook app, called 'Place Tips', will soon give you contextually based information based on your location.

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Sony to axe PS Vita Maps, near, YouTube apps

Sony to axe PS Vita Maps, near, YouTube apps

It seems like Sony is putting to rest a few of its services, probably much to the dismay and even worry of its customers. Hot on the heels of an announcement that will swap out its Music Unlimited service for a Spotify-powered PlayStation Music, the tech giant is now announcing the impending shtudown of two PS Vita apps, Maps and YouTube. It isn't saying exactly why it is doing so and, in at least one case, isn't offering a replacement.

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Roadie, the crowdsourced courier system, now open for business

Roadie, the crowdsourced courier system, now open for business

Getting yourself from one place to another is tough enough at times. Getting items moved around can be even more headache-inducing. Your mom wants you to take her favorite chair to get upholstered, but you’re at work and can’t get to her place and — it’s all just a mess. It would be nice if you had a friend who could help out, but everyone is busy, right? With Roadie, you can get your stuff transported with ease. The crowdsourced courier system is now open for business, and could end up being a big deal.

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smrtGRiPS makes even your bike grips smarter

smrtGRiPS makes even your bike grips smarter

The Internet of Things might be coming to a head. You know that when anything and everything is becoming a "connected device". We've seen some attempt to make smart bikes more accessible, from simple addons to smart wheels. Now it's the turn of your bike grip to become the next smart bike part. Introducing smrtGRiPS, the world's first connected bike grip that promises to give users eyes-free navigation and worry-free location, without the hassles of obtrusive displays, messy installations, or expensive components.

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