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Location Based Services – a call for innovative applications

Location Based Services (LBS) are part of consumers’ everyday user experience with Sony Ericsson phones. Popular applications include finding location on a map, getting turn-by-turn instructions to drive or walk to a destination and sharing position with friends.

Positioning is becoming part of more and more applications, for example in social networking services. We see a growing interest for Location Based Services in general.

LBS Today

Today Sony Ericsson provides the basic needs within Location Based Services via partners such as Google and Appello. Local search, what is nearby, directions and the possibility to see your friends on a map is provided via Google Maps for Mobile.

Appello is our partner for turn-by-turn navigation. Appello’s Wisepilot transforms your phone into a friendly guide helping you explore your world with clear voice instructions, 3D maps, weather forecasts, event guides, speed cameras and much more.

Geotagging is another Location Based Service. Geotagged photographs can be represented on a map, providing an overview of a photo collection such as a vacation. It’s also possible to easily find photos related to a given location. Many online sharing services support geotagged photos.

“Send Your Location” lets you send your current location or a saved favourite location as an MMS; it can even be used on non-GPS phones.

Latest API support

We support the Ericsson Labs vector maps API SDK: https://labs.ericsson.com/apis/mobile-maps/

Sony Ericsson JP-8.5 phones support the LMX format (Nokia Landmark Exchange format). When an LMX file (XML file with information about a location or Point Of Interest) appears in the device, a list with suitable actions will be presented to the user (Show on map, Navigate to etc.) This can be used also by applications to get access to the map and navigation applications.

JP-8.5 also introduces support for KML files in the browser. KML files contain geographic data such as a route. Web developers can link a KML file (for example, http://foo.com/... /companylocation.kml) and Sony Ericsson phones will launch Google Maps with the URL of the KML file as the inparameter so that the geographic data is displayed to the user.

We support JSR 179 (Location API 1.0) and we are very interested to extend the functionality behind it in the next release of Sony Ericsson Java Platform; we value input on the extensions that would be most useful to developers.

LBS Tomorrow

Sony Ericsson is looking for new innovative applications. For example, supporting our Green Heart products with a more eco friendly focus or some new innovative applications combining LBS with Games, Communication, Music or Photos. You can send us your apps at submit.sonyericsson.com – successful applications are on sale within 30 days of submission. Applications with interesting LBS features will be flagged to our specialist LBS team.

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