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Location-based Social Mapping on your mobile

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November 15, 2006

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November 16, 2006 Given that it’s just one third of a century since the world’s first cell phone call was made, one wonders just what we’ll be carrying in another 33 years and just what it might be capable of. We had cause to ponder how useful the device formerly known as the mobile phone could become when we saw the new loopt service today. It’s a location-based social mapping service that enables mobile phone users to share their location, status messages, photos and other on-the-go experiences with friends but unlike other social location services, automatically updates the location of everyone in a private network and displays that information directly on a map on the phone. It even sends an alert when a friend in the network is near, putting an end to missed connections in the mall, at the movies or around town.

Initially available via the Boost network, Boost loopt also brings geo-tagging capabilities to a major U.S. wireless carrier for the first time. The service’s journaling feature allows mobile users to “geo tag” locations and captures their experience with friends in their private network.

Boost loopt also protects the privacy of its users by incorporating a variety of safety features and privacy controls. For example, users of the Boost loopt service must give permission allowing others to have access to their location.

The Boost Mobile agreement is the first major partnership for Silicon Valley-based loopt, which was founded last year by Sam Altman while he was a student at Stanford University.

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About the Author
Mike Hanlon Mike grew up thinking he would become a mathematician, accidentally started motorcycle racing, got a job writing road tests for a motorcycle magazine while at university, and became a writer. As a travelling photojournalist during his early career, his work was published in a dozen languages across 20+ countries. He went on to edit or manage over 50 print publications, with target audiences ranging from pensioners to plumbers, many different sports, many car and motorcycle magazines, with many more in the fields of communication - narrow subject magazines on topics such as advertising, marketing, visual communications, design, presentation and direct marketing. Then came the internet and Mike managed internet projects for Australia's largest multimedia company, Telstra.com.au (Australia's largest Telco), Seek.com.au (Australia's largest employment site), top100.com.au, hitwise.com, and a dozen other internet start-ups before founding Gizmag in 2002. Now he writes and thinks. All articles by Mike Hanlon
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