Google locates mobile phone users by tracking cell towers

The Google Maps product for cell phones is now using cell tower ID information to tell users where they are and what destinations are nearby.

Google on Wednesday released Google Maps for Mobile Version 2.0 in beta. GPS technology is supported on fewer than 15 per cent of mobile phones sold this year, Google says, arguing that its new “My Location” service will extend location information to more mobile users.

“The My Location technology takes information broadcast from cell towers and sifts it through Google-developed algorithms to approximate a user’s current location on the map,” Google states in a press release. “The My Location technology is available on most smartphones, including all color BlackBerry devices, all Symbian Series 60 3rd Edition devices, most Windows Mobile devices, newer Sony Ericsson devices, and some Motorola devices.”

Google promised to protect privacy by not associating location data with any personally identifiable information. My Location will be useful for finding restaurants, hotels, coffee shops and other businesses.

Google is hoping GPS users will use My Location as a complementary technology, and argues that My Location has some advantages over GPS.

“The My Location technology also complements GPS-enabled devices, as it delivers a location estimate faster than GPS, provides coverage inside buildings (where GPS signals can be unreliable), and doesn’t drain phone batteries as quickly as GPS,” Google states.

Google is quickly increasing its presence in the mobile market, most notably by developing Android, an open source platform that can be used by third-party developers to create applications for mobile devices.

Would you recommend this article?

Share

Thanks for taking the time to let us know what you think of this article!
We'd love to hear your opinion about this or any other story you read in our publication.


Jim Love, Chief Content Officer, IT World Canada

Featured Download

CDN Staff
CDN Staffhttps://channeldailynews.com
For over 25 years, CDN has been the voice of the IT channel community in Canada. Today through our digital magazine, e-mail newsletter, video reports, events and social media platforms, we provide channel partners with the information they need to grow their business.

Related Tech News

CDN in your inbox

CDN delivers a critical analysis of the competitive landscape detailing both the challenges and opportunities facing solution providers. CDN's email newsletter details the most important news and commentary from the channel.