GPS devices have been gaining more and more people, regardless of the area in which they work.If you have never used one of these devices, you may have heard of them.Like most technologies, the GPS system has undergone changes and updates since its launch in 1973. And evolution does not stop.
There is no denying that a GPS device can save the user from unpleasant situations like getting lost in a totally unfamiliar city.However, the global positioning system can be used for many other activities beyond the one for which it was initially created.
Proof of this are applications that make use of geolocation.With them the user can know everything that is going on around them without necessarily having to leave the house.The use of geolocation is still timid, but has been growing, and much, in recent times.
Thinking about the various applications that the GPS system may have, it is difficult to imagine that in the future it will not be even more present in people’s daily lives.Every day more and more devices with GPS receivers appear in the market, always bringing some innovative application.
Since the tendency is that most applications use geolocation in some way, how about knowing a little more about this technology, the applications that already exist in the market and what to expect for the future?
Talking about outdoor geolocation and GPS is really cool according to growtheology.com, but it can get even more interesting if you know how the global positioning system works and also the difference between GPS and geolocation.
How does GPS work?
The GPS (Global Positioning System) is a device that had its origin in the United States Department of Defense.Its function is to identify the location of a device called a GPS receiver, which is nothing more than a device that shows its position on land.
Global positioning systems use triangulation to determine the location of a receiver on the ground.The animation below helps you understand a little better how this works.
A fourth satellite is needed to determine the altitude the user is in.Not all GPS receivers display this information, but it is always calculated and sent to the device.
The geolocation system allows, from a computer that is connected to the internet, the applications and services to know the geographic location of the users.
This geolocation usually works by identifying the IP of the machine, which is able to inform the country, the city and the current time from where you are.
Geolocation can also be used with data from a MAC address, RFID (radio frequency identification), wireless connection, and GPS coordinates.Several smartphones use built-in GPS to send location information.
Now that you know how GPS works and also what is geolocation, how about knowing a little better the applications that make use of these technologies?Check out how the interaction between people can be extremely helpful in some situations.
Where am I?
There are several service options that allow the user to post their location on social networks.In addition to telling you which corner of the world you are in, these applications are a real hand in the wheel for anyone in a country or a city they do not know very well.
This is because users who use these services can enter the most diverse information about tourist attractions, bars, restaurants and other interesting places to meet in the cities.In addition to messages, people can also post photos of the place.
There is no denying that it may be a little strange to accept suggestions of places to visit given by strangers.However, the idea is precisely to make the users themselves insert the content of services of this type.
The pioneer and his successors
Foursquare was perhaps one of the first online geolocation services that made it successful among users. The main idea of Foursquare is to let your friends see where you are and send suggestions of nearby places that can be visited.
These friends can be both people you know personally and virtual friends of the online service itself.Foursquare uses the GPS system to determine the location of the user.That way, it works only on phones that have GPS receivers.
One of Foursquare’s successors, at least as far as fame is concerned, is Gowalla .This sim works as a social network for backpackers and people who travel quite often.
You can add photos and information about places you’ve visited.So, if a user is thinking of traveling to a particular city, he can contact other people who have been there to find out the best places to go.The service works almost like a virtual tour guide.
Traffic and services
Apart from the services that help you to choose the places to visit there are also those who give a strength to find services like: taxi, airport, bus station and gas station.No matter where you are, just a touch of your cell phone for information to appear on the screen.
The Taxi Pointer , for example, shows all taxi points near your location.The same thing happens with the Cinema Pointer , which shows all the movie theaters in the neighborhood.
If you’re traveling by car, some mobile apps can make sure your trip runs smoothly.The Road Pointer helps in finding the right path to the chosen destination.There is also the Radar Pointer that warns the user about all speed cameras scattered along the road.
To avoid congestion, you can use Traffic Pointer , which provides real-time traffic information in some Brazilian cities. Or the newbie Waze , which brings the idea of interaction between users.
For example, if you are stuck in a congestion, you can access the service and mark that portion as congested, alerting other users who are in the vicinity so that they take an alternative route.
And what does this have to do with GPS?
The answer to this question is: EVERYTHING!All of these applications use geolocation, based on GPS system, to indicate the exact position of users and show the best entertainment options and services to the surroundings.
The only way to use the applications and services listed throughout this article properly is through devices that have GPS receivers.
This shows that the global positioning system can be used in many other ways than traditional browsers.
You may have noticed that some advertising banners seem too specific, as if they were written exclusively for one person.It’s because they know what city you are accessing the site for.This can also be easily used to make the basic information search more convenient, such as accessing the weather forecast and seeing which movies are on display in the theaters of your city.
In smartphones, Twitter has a function called “Nearby.” By using it, you can see all the people who are “tweeting” in regions really close to you, and can even tell you what the specific distance is. Online photo services are also investing heavily in geolocation and geotagging (geographic marking).
How long will this last?
Many users still have doubts about the durability of services and technologies such as geolocation.However, some evidence shows that services of this type tend to establish themselves increasingly in the market.
One is the number of GPS devices sold in recent times.The browser market has grown unexpectedly in the last two years, in addition to the large number of cell phones equipped with GPS receivers that came up.
Strange as it may seem, interaction with strangers is one of the biggest trends on the internet.Another reason for more and more companies to invest in applications that offer this type of service to users.
In addition, the GPS system has been used by civilians for over ten years.Constant updates of software and hardware suggest that technology will not be overlooked any time soon.
It is not uncommon to be afraid that all this wonder will be cast aside over time.However, the trends and events of recent years show that perhaps it is time to consider the GPS system almost indispensable in people’s daily lives.
Now that you know how the GPS system works and you know several applications that use geolocation to interact with users, be sure to submit your opinion about the future of GPSs.
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