My Latitude Longitude
(My Lat/Lon)

Real-time identification of location expressed in terms of latitude and longitude, abbreviated as "Lat/Lon", can now be found in many mass marketed devices such as GPS receivers and cell phones.

Search and rescue has long used Latitude and Longitude. A boater, hiker, climber, etc., is well advised to call for help with current Lat/Lon in hand. Advanced marine radios with digital selective calling can automatically transmit Lat/Lon in emergency broadcasts. Expect such function to migrate to all new marine radios and to ubiquitous devices such as cell phones.

Early evolution in real time consumer products involved pinpointing current location on a map (chart). This expanded to showing a history of locations, a path traveled. The addition of routing logic permits a forecast of optimized travel to a destination, displayed in detail on a map and textually (both written and spoken.) Such routing logic, applied in real time, permits live corrections to current travel.

Via polling or periodic broadcast, remote identification of a location becomes cheap and effective. That is not to say that businesses will sell such services at low cost. There will be an attempt to add value to the most basic information of a target's current location and completed/planned travel -- to both the target and to others. Examples include reporting time/date stamped vehicle location, speeding violations, threading through traffic at legal speed, route optimizations for pickups and deliveries, data for subsequent analysis and legal matters, marketing to nearby targets, etc.

As 2007 starts, the scramble to own maps and location images is apparent. These will be a key element to adding value. Another other key element will be relationships with users and those who can benefit from knowing a user's location. The final key element is usage rights to required technology. Because the incremental cost to add Lat/Lon function is tiny and the market so huge, there will be a few big financial winners. Expect market participation by players prior to their lock down of usage rights and subsequent legal action to reallocate financial rewards.

Contact MyOneCent Copyright 2006 Walter K. Cruden All Rights Reserved