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Internet search leader Google Inc. is testing technology that will find the location of people using its mobile mapping service, even if the phone making the connection isn't equipped with a GPS receiver.
The new tracking feature introduced Wednesday is being touted as an added convenience because it will enable people on the go to skip the task of typing a starting address on a mobile handset's small keys when they turn to Google's maps for guidance.
Using the technology, dubbed "My Location," simply requires pressing zero on a mobile handset equipped with the new software. The sender's location shows up as a blue dot on Google's mobile maps.
No doubt, once targetting improves. While Google states they hope to peg your location to within a quarter to three miles, I wonder, is that a radius or diameter distance? I suspect that's a radius distance, meaning they'll know I'm inside a circle the size of a half to six miles...
My thought was that it gives new meaning to the phrase "traffic patterns," and how will that affect ad bid pricing. You located in the downtown core, surrounded by restaurants. Will those downtown restaurants have to bid more for ads, since they are in a high (physical) traffic area? Will ads for suburban eateries be cheaper, due to less traffic & competition?
I've seen this used 6 or 7 years ago and they were able to follow a courier's whole route because he was carrying a mobile. I am sure when the phone can see 3 cells or more accuracy is pinpoint.
[edited by: SlyOldDog at 6:39 am (utc) on Dec. 3, 2007]