Location-Based Services – Introduction

copyrights:Aleksander Buczkowski 2011-2012

During last several years, one could observe revolution in location-based technologies and geospatial information. Due to ubiquity of geographic layer in many everyday activities, people are getting more conscious about the spatial aspect of life.

Popularity of personal navigation devices as well as mapping services for example Google Maps in both internet and mobile versions has made much part of society used to certain location-based ideas and their utilization. It seems as well that decreasing prices of modern mobile devices are pushing Information Society to go mobile. According to IDC research, fourth quarter of 2010 was the first time in the history when sales of smartphone devices was higher than Personal Computers. Moreover, already 25% of users prefer using smartphones over a computer to browse the World Wide Web and the number is growing and this statistic doesn’t include tablets. All those facts created opportunity for development and adoption of Location-Based Services (LBS), which are utilizing mobile devices, wireless networks and positing technologies in order to bring unique and broad value to users.

LBS have recently attracted significant attention due to their potential to transform mobile communications and the potential for a range of highly personalized and context-aware services. Since early begging having its origins in E911 project in U.S. in late 1990’s and the first location-tracking functionalities introduced in Japan in 2001 Location-Based Services have made considerable progress. Today new applications of LBS are limited only by the technology and creativity of service developers and it is growing on monthly bases.