The News -- 10/31/00
Vicinity and Phone.com Announce Location Based Services
Well, the future’s coming
faster than I had imagined. This month, Vicinity, a vendor of location-based
information, and Phone.com, maker of the most popular WAP browser as well
as other wireless applications, announced Vicinity’s BrandFinder.
BrandFinder is a Web and wireless application that gives users the ability
to search nearly 300 of their favorite brands and locate the retailers and
service providers nearest to them. While the major wireless providers fight
the future and grumble about complying with the FCC’s E911 regulation
(which requires them to locate a cell phone within 30 to 50 meters by next
year), these two vendors are making it real now. Imagine all the brand
owners who will hustle to get on Vicinity’s list. You gotta figure existing
Vicinity customers such as FedEx, Ford, GM, Hilton Hotels Corporation,
Marriott, McDonald’s, NEC, Pizza Hut, Starbucks, Starwood Hotels, Taco
Bell, Toyota, Levi Strauss & Co. and UPS will have the leg up.
Airflash Teams with Excite and Orange on Location-Based Services
Even more progress on the Personal Area Network front. This
announcement doesn’t detail exactly how the network will determine
proximity. I suspect the user will somehow input his or her location.
Still, the future’s coming fast.