Location Labs, a company that provides a wide variety of mobile location infrastructure and application solutions, today announced a brand new platform dedicated to “next-generation location, control and security” on mobile devices.
Location Labs is the company that provides location-aware technology to device makers, developers and even wireless carriers, and has the infrastructure in place to locate over 250 million mobile phones across all the major carriers in the US — including both smartphones and so-called “feature phones.” In other words, the company knows what it’s doing when it comes to mobile location. The goal of the new platform, dubbed “Sparkle,” is to take things to the next level and to allow developers to create a new generation of location-based application.
When deployed on handsets, the Sparkle Client provides platform developers with access to a number of services including location, security, and user-level controls to manage voice, data and applications. In addition, when deployed through the carriers, Sparkle provides developers with access to controls and location exposed as an API. Sparkle also allows developers to easily build applications around safety, security and monitoring to provide richer and more complex applications for end-users. Sprint actually announced plans to pre-load the Sparkle platform on future smartphones at its developer conference last week. Some benefits to the new platform include:
- On-Demand Cloud-based Location – The ability to locate and identify any handset
- Geofencing & Location Services – Precise geofence creation and messaging via web service interfaces
- Controls for Data & Voice – Monitor and control voice, data and text message services on the handset
- Driving Velocity Determination – The ability to detect motion and velocity directly from the handset
As an example of its potential, a developer in the company’s beta program created an app called “MayorMaker,” which utilizes Sparkle’s Geofencing capabilities along with the Foursquare, Facebook and Twitter APIs to automatically check users into and out of their favorite venues. Other applications that use Sparkle’s Control capabilities include TweetMover, the first game developed using Twitter to control and deliver Tweets automatically based on location.
“We were able to focus on the application experience and not the inner workings of geofencing and battery life,” explained Gregory Raiz, founder of Raizlabs. It should be interesting to see what developers come up with when the platform goes live for everyone. Currently, it’s still in private beta with select developers.