Posted on 28 November 2007

New Google Maps Mobile Knows Your Location

Written by Robert Merrill

Topics: Uncategorized

BlackBerry 8830When I bought my Blackberry 8830, the last thing I bought it for was its on-board GPS. I didn’t even know it had one. Turns out, I wasn’t supposed to know about it since Verizon disables the GPS deep in the kernel of the device. Turns out that even Google was talking about how cool the 8800 series Blackberry devices are, and mine was crippled. Grrr.Verizon Wireless

Thankfully, I tempered my suddenly-burning desire to buy a bluetooth GPS puck or something nutty like that so I could absolutely know where I am all the time.

This was good because Google Maps Mobile has recently updated (along with almost all the other Google Mobile apps) to include GPS pseudo-location by triangulating signals from nearby cellular towers.

Adam Ostorow of Mashable says, “Between free Google Maps for Mobile and low cost GPS navigation offerings from many of the wireless carriers, the assault is on the expensive GPS device makers”

I downloaded it and ran it with some trepidation as other services like this have been crippled in Utah because they didn’t have access to know exactly where I am. Navizon, for example, kept saying I was in Ogden, which would surely burn up a lot of gas as I a m 2 hours South of there.

I was happy to discover that it fired up with my location centered in the screen. Zooming in, I found that it wasn’t exact, but very close. In the picture below, there’s a blue-dot in the upper-right corner. I am about exactly one street South of there at the Borders Bookstore in Provo.

New Google Maps Mobile knows where you are... almost. When I fired it up, it said I was a bit North of where I really am. The red arrow points to its location finder (the blue dot). The yellow arrow is where I actually am. Not *exact*, but but its not full GPS either... and for the (FREE) price, it's a great tool.

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  1. Markus Goebel's Tech News Comments Says:

    How much does Google pay for the locator info?…

    I wonder how much Google has to pay for that location info, because it’s not free. In Germany the mobile operators charge €0.10 from third parties for every localization. In Berlin we have Qiro which does quite the same, but more advanced. You can lo…

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