The How Zone

Cellphone Locating


How can this be improved?

Better text entry or none at all. Trying to type a lat/lon into a candy bar sized cellphone is a bit of a challenge. Ideally a modern GPS would pass a standardized location message to the cellphone via infrared or bluetooth and I would tell the cellphone where to send it.

Believe it or not this AudioVox 8500 that I'm using has location sensing built in. There's a menu for choosing to use location just for 911 calls or to use it all of the time. What "all of the time" means is anyone's guess, since it sure doesn't seem like I can use it.

Check out the Garmin Rino 110. It's a combination GPS and short range radio that let's you send your location to other, nearby Rino's, which can see where you are on their map. One could imagine being able to do much the same with a cell phone in the near future.

Some clever entrepreneur could offer a "send my map" feature. It would send a little map image, just like folks send phone camera images. The success of this will depend greatly on the resolution of the phone's location sensing technology, but in some cases even that might not matter.

This, and other location sensing techniques, will be part of a future How Zone article.

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