Items tagged with GPS

AT&T is the second largest wireless carrier in the United States with millions of customers under its umbrella. But the company is now coming under fire for its decision to sell location data pertaining to its wireless customers. While AT&T, T-Mobile, and Verizon have all said they stopped selling phone location information to other companies, AT&T has announced that it wasn't illegal for it to sell the data. AT&T is claiming it did nothing wrong, just as the FCC has started an investigation into the practice. The telecom giant has argues that its sale of assisted GPS or A-GPS data that is used with 911 location services doesn't violate U.S. law. The reason... Read more...
Last November, Strava Labs launched a Global Heat Map for its fitness tracking app, which works in conjunction with fitness devices such as the Fitbit. It is billed as being the "largest, riches, and most beautiful dataset of its kind," but it's also proving a little too revealing for some military personnel. In can be deemed a security oversight, the heatmap is inadvertently revealing location data of soldiers at U.S. military bases. Strava's heatmap uses GPS tracking and satellite information to pinpoint a subscriber's location and movements. It is not a live map, but an accumulation of activity recorded between 2015 and September 2017. In maps of densely populated places like the United States... Read more...
Motorists should take caution when driving in the direction of California's wildfires, even when using a navigation app that is continually updated. Case in point, users of Waze and other similar navigation apps report that driving directions have pointed them squarely to where the wildfires are raging, including roads that have been closed down or otherwise blocked off because of the fires. The aftermath of a wildfire in 2015 (Image Source: Flickr via Bob Dass) Apps like Waze use a combination of artificial intelligence and driver input to stay up to date with current conditions. In theory, these apps should warn drivers of dangerous areas and offer a different route to their destination. And... Read more...
We've all been there when using GPS on our smartphones. You try and use something like Google Maps to navigate to a place you have never been, and all of a sudden, it's hard to tell if you should be on the feeder road or the highway. You eventually find out after driving too far that you are traveling along the wrong route end up cursing Google Maps. This will be a thing of the past next year when smartphones receive much more accurate GPS chips. How accurate you ask: Down to the inch. The chips that will save us from GPS hell are from Broadcom and the BCM47755 will have accuracy to 30-centimeters compared to the accuracy to 5-meters GPS chips offer today.What's even better is that the BCM47755... Read more...
Your Lexus might not be your best navigation tool, unless you enjoy purple screens of death. A botched Lexus OTA software update has crippled the vehicle navigation and infotainment systems. Affected vehicles such as the RX350 are currently stuck in a boot loop following the update. Cindy Knight, a Toyota spokeswoman stated, “We have not found the root cause yet.” The glitch can also affect radio controls, which are displayed on the same dashboard screen. The company has not yet determined whether vehicles will need to return to dealerships in order to fix this latest glitch or if another OTA update will get customers up and running again. Many of our owner's vehicle head units stopped working.... Read more...
It's tough to get lost these days. That's because we're increasingly becoming connected creatures with mobile devices always at the ready, devices that can tell us where we are at any given moment and how to get to where we need to be. Well, until the connection is lost, at which point you might find yourself wandering aimlessly in unfamiliar territory. Google's solution to that is to let you download sections of the world to your phone via Google Maps.This isn't entirely new -- it was already possible to view an area of a map offline in Google Maps -- but what's changed is that you can download an area and continue to receive turn-by-turn directions when there's no connectivity. You can also... Read more...
Apple launched its homegrown mapping solution, Maps, with iOS 6 back in 2012. Maps encountered more than a few unscheduled detours along the way and helped push one exec, Scott Forstall, out the door. Over the past few years, Maps has gained in competency and has become a well-rounded navigation solution, although one that isn’t quite as robust as perennial favorite Google Maps. Apple is looking to give Maps yet another shot in the arm with the now confirmed acquisition of Coherent Navigation, a GPS firm that was founded in 2008. The deal was sniffed out by Mac Rumors earlier this morning and Apple confirmed the acquisition this afternoon to The New York Times, stating only, “Apple buys smaller... Read more...
The death toll from automobile crashes is expected to drop over the next few years, thanks to new rules set by European Union this week. By April 2018, all new cars will carry a device that can contact emergency services automatically immediately after a car accident. The device is expected to reduce deaths by alerting emergency services faster than victims or first responders might, reducing response times by as 60 percent.Volvo is among companies that have welcomed the new safety regs in Europe. Pictured is the Volvo V60 Polestar, model year 2016.The auto industry in Europe has encouraged the rules, which specify that the device call emergency responders and provide them with details of the... Read more...
As wearable tech concepts go, the idea of a "smart helmet' — a motorcycle helmet equipped to deliver usable information to its wearer via heads-up visuals projected onto the visor, such as GPS data — really is quite smart, allowing riders to keep their eyes on the road. And even smarter? Configuring said helmet to respond to voice commands, allowing riders to keep their hands firmly on the handlebars. So all of this considered, the LiveMap helmet is indeed one wicked smart piece of wearable tech. The brainchild of a group of Russian engineers, the lightweight Android-based LiveMap helmet is fitted with GPS and voice controls, developed with a $250,000 grant by the Russian Ministry of Science... Read more...
As someone who does a lot of driving and depends greatly upon the Waze app (Waze has roughly 50 million users in over 200 countries around the world), this bit of news struck a nerve with me. Law enforcement agencies across the country are coming out against the app, saying that would-be cop killers could use it to stalk officers while they are doing their jobs. But before we get to the complaints, let’s talk a little bit about what Waze actually does. First and foremost, Waze operates like a traditional GPS app, giving you turn-by-turn directions to a destination, voice prompts with spoken street names, ETA, etc. This is typical stuff you’ll find in apps like Apple Maps or Google Maps. However,... Read more...
On Android, given that it's built by Google, consumers already have access to what is arguably the best routing/navigational app in the known universe: Google Maps. But if for some reason that doesn't appeal to you, there's another major player coming to Android at long last. The HERE team is announcing this week that a beta of its mapping app is now ready for Android users, so long as you're using a Samsung device. Thanks to a licensing agreement with Samsung, it'll be available for free, exclusively for Samsung Galaxy smartphones like the Galaxy S5. What makes HERE special is that it'll work without an Internet connection. If you have a solid GPS signal, you're in business, even when it comes... Read more...
Toddlers love to mimic their parents, which is why you see them talking on pretend mobile phones. And now that the wearable category is starting to gain some momentum, it didn't take long for a company to once again think of the kids, though it wasn't Fisher Price or Mattel. Perhaps more fittingly, LG was the one that thought of extending the wearable experience to the little ones, which is the idea behind its new KizON. KizON isn't simply a toy imitation of a smartwatch, however, but a GPS-enabled device that allows parents to keep track of their young children's whereabouts. Utilizing both GPS and Wi-Fi, mom and dad can receive real-time location data of little Devon on their smartphone. If... Read more...
Because this is America and we refuse to wait for our food to be prepared in a reasonable timeframe, Taco Bell is obliging us by experimenting with taking orders via smartphones. A test program will launch within weeks, and nationwide rollout is expected before the end of the year, according to Nation’s Restaurant News. Taco Bell isn’t just implementing an existing solution, though; the company is building its own from scratch. The app will display different front-page enticements depending on the time of day, and although the (customizable) menu is front and center, users will be able to quickly find the nearest Taco Bell location. There will also be upsell opportunities suggested... Read more...
“Iridium GO! is unlike anything the world has seen before,” reads the bold proclamation on the Iridium website. “Powered by the world's furthest reaching network, this compact, rugged and portable unit creates the first ever reliable global connection for voice and data communications on up to 5 smartphones, laptops or tablets.” The device looks a bit unconventional--a boxy little thing with a stubby antenna that pops up--which is commensurate with what it offers, which is global Internet access. The device relies on satellites for connectivity and grants users voice calls, apps, two-way SMS, GPS tracking, and SOS alert functionality via what amounts to a mobile hotspot.... Read more...
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