Opinions

Is Google’s Acquisition of Motorola Mobility an Attempt to Control Location Biz?

September 13, 2011By

Google is at it again. This time Motorola Mobility is on the buying block. What does this mean to the location-based services market? Another potential location platform market closed off? Some industry experts believe this is the case. In addition, Iridium and TeleNav are making LBS news with recent product launches and acquisitions. read more

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Expert Advice: EPIC Happening — Europe’s PNT Industry Council

September 1, 2011By

We have the United States GPS Industry Council, the Japan GPS Council, and the Korean GNSS Technology Council. Anything missing? The challenges facing the performance, navigation, and timing (PNT) community, which relies on GNSS amongst other things, are getting more numerous and complex, and Europe is the only major territory without a unified industry nexus where such challenges can be engaged. However, this is about to change. read more

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Out in Front: The Good, the Bad, the Incompetent

September 1, 2011By

The most efficient use of spectrum the world has ever seen benefits more than a billion people today. Two billion tomorrow, when modernized and interoperable GNSS gets real. This massive installed base constitutes a source of innovative advantage and invaluable good will for the United States. The latter arises from the high degree of trust and confidence in the United States and its stewardship of GPS, one of the most successful — and perhaps only — simultaneous foreign aid and domestic economic stimulus programs ever created. read more

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Expert Advice: Exploring the Technologies Behind Location-Gate

September 1, 2011By

For the past several months, controversy has raged over the revelation that Apple and Google tracked mobile subscriber location movements and stored that information in an unencrypted file on the handset, where it was potentially vulnerable to hacking and other inappropriate usage. The resulting Location-gate scandal highlights the sometimes tenuous control of mobile subscriber information versus the business objectives of dominant platform and applications providers. These business objectives may include immediate revenue opportunities from the subscriber being tracked or broader self-interest initiatives, such as collecting marketing data that may be valuable to third parties like advertisers, or building subscriber-reported Wi-Fi access point databases. read more

Expert Advice: Cloud-Based Location Changes Enterprise Playing Field

September 1, 2011By

New technology and wireless carrier openness now make real-time access to telephone location information available to the enterprise with no application required on the mobile device. Yes, that’s right: no application required! Cloud-based location, offered via direct connections to wireless operators, changes the playing field for enterprises to introduce instant operational efficiencies. Marrying location insight, privacy controls, and multi-modal communications through network application programming interfaces (APIs) provides enterprises with flexibility, cost savings, and time-to-market advantages. Whether delivering geo-targeted promotions, dispatching services, verifying worker activities, or performing other location-relevant actions, businesses now have cross-carrier access to location information for more than 85 percent of U.S. wireless subscribers — instantly! read more

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Watching and Waiting. And Questioning. GPS in the Balance

August 25, 2011By

The difference between navigation and communication signals — a key point not well or not at all understood in Washington — and an FCC rule that could cause LightSquared to foot substantial GPS refitting bills even if it prevails to interfere, were two of several subjects that came to light in last week’s “LightSquared Watch” webinar. As the Federal Communications Commission goes through its deliberations, two inside-the-Beltway experts joined me to speculate on what may happen, what we might do about it at that time, and the long, strange trip that brought us to this point. These matters, and your questions answered, in this month’s column. read more

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LightSquared: The Ball is in the FCC’s Court

August 18, 2011By

The FCC's public comment period regarding the LightSquared/GPS interference issue has ended and the reply comment period is over as well. To date, more than 3,300 comments were entered that the FCC must sift through and arrive at some sort of conclusion. Following are my last comments filed with the FCC as well as my best guess at where this is heading. read more

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