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Location based applications

Technology has influenced man in every dimension. In fact, it has given birth to a few new dimensions that has changed the way in people do business. Lets look at this banal GPS enabled Mobile App that enables me to start the application and look at the near by businesses. I can look at the eateries close by, shopping centers, hospitals and ATMs. This is helpful for 90% percent of my use cases. This is a simple application that triggers my imagination and broadens hope for more useful and creative location based applications. For businesses: Nike Outlet offering 50% discount, Restaurant running a food festival, or arts exhibition, it would be very effective to target people who are in the vicinity of the business. The next big companies in the Internet world would be bridging the gap between businesses, their offers and common man who is around these businesses.

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Foursquare is a new generation Location based application that took the latter to the next level. It helps people to find out if there are friends around the places they are visiting: eateries, shopping centers and events and then decide if they would want to meet or avoid these friends. People would trust the reviews of known people more and this results in a pattern in which a group of people would visit the business center. Lets take the case of a person – G, visiting a restaurant – X.  G checks into the restaurant, puts up his location on the Internet for his friends to see. G loves the spicy food and writes a review saying that he loved the place and he would definitely come back. G’s friends see the review and they would want to try the new place next time they went out for dinner in X’s neighborhood. Though the event of G’s friends visiting the restaurant can’t be guaranteed (even though the probability is high), G’s negative review of the restaurant would certainly stop his friends from dining at X.

Business centers should put these applications to good use to grow their businesses. Ads can be targeted more effectively with such applications. This gives a new life to the clichéd model of business – ad broker – end consumer in the Internet world. Next five years will see a proliferation of such applications with nuances, most of them being start-ups. Many big companies will try to move their heavy bandwagon in this direction. The following can ensure success of the new paradigm:

  • Quality Data – All the local businesses and their offers, events must be there in the database. More businesses.
  • Ease of use of the application – End user should do very minimal kung fu to use the application and get the necessary data. This is a very important factor for any application to be successful.
  • Simple presentation of the data in a very useful format – The data should be presented in a form that is strikingly convenient.

Business opportunity is immense and is waiting to be exploited. The game has just begun.

Image Courtesy: Nokia – http://www.oviapplications.com/tag/location-based-services/

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Categories: General, Technology
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