Like myself you may have been using the mobile version of Google Maps for the last year or so and it works very well, the application is well adapted to mobile devices – if you look carefully you will see that it uses a different rendering to the normal browser based Google Maps – mobile cartography needs to be different !!
This week a new version of maps was released in the UK which starts to really deliver on the potential of location based services, now like our American cousins we have up to date points of interest information available, so that if you try to search for a business you will actually find one now..
It’s not new or unique but what I think is really important here it that the content about locations is actionable, so if I search for a pub in London called “The Garrison” I am presented with a map, directions to the pub from where I might be, its address and telephone number which if I click on actually is dialled by the phone – remember the N95 and suchlike actually have telephone capability as well as GPS, WiFi, cameras, coffee machines etc. in them as well 🙂
Content that is actionable is key I believe to LBS finally taking off, a map on a screen is not enough, it’s still often easier to ask somebody for directions, but how likely is it that they will know a pub’s telephone number or its opening hours..
Written and submitted from home, using my home 802.11 network.