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LBS360.NET will maintain the same high caliber of editorial review that you expect from this and other publications of Directions Media. LBS360.NET will cover topics related to:
- Wireless location-based services
- Location enabling technology platforms
- Location determination hardware and services (GPS, RFID, Wi-Fi, Microwave, etc.)
- Field service Management
- Mobile Resource Management
- Software and application development
- Web mapping portals
- Handsets and other mobile devices
- Real-time geospatial data
What are Location Services?
Location services enable customized information to be delivered or made available based on the specific location of the user. Knowing where the user is at any given time adds a valuable dimension to the kinds of services that can be offered.
As Harry Niedzwiadek writes in his feature article, “All businesses are in pursuit of just-in-time actionable information – just the right information, at the right time, at the right location, on any device – from which they can make effective decisions and take immediate action.” This observation applies equally to individuals in our daily lives. At some points in our lives, we have all found a need to know, for example, where the closest Pizza Palace is and how to get to it from wherever we happen to be at the moment, with a car full of hungry kids! Also check out What are Location Services? – From a GIS Perspective, by Ian Koeppel, ESRI Location Services Industry Manager.
Within the mobile wireless network community, there are two distinct aspects of Location Services:
Location Services (also called Mobile Positioning or Mobile Position Determination technology) deliver specific information about the geographic location (i.e., position) of mobile terminals such as mobile telephones, PDAs, and other devices attached to other moveable items such as people, packages and vehicles.
Location Application Services (also called Location-based Services) deliver end-user applications, normally based on knowing the position of a user with their mobile terminal. These services can be delivered through a wide range of devices, including wireless phones, in-vehicle tracking modules and other types of mobile terminals. Location Application Services also support operations throughout a location-enabled enterprise, including such applications as customer relationship management, accounting, network planning, inventory management, field service, network management, inside/outside plant, and so on.
From a user’s perspective the distinction between Location Services and Location Application Services may not be important. For simplicity, we use the general term Location Services to describe the infrastructure and services that deliver location-based information to users and are available across fixed and mobile networks, such that they can be used by anyone, anywhere at any time and on any device. Location Services become integral to the enterprise (and to the way individuals behave) when they are ubiquitous, efficient and easy to use.