Monday, 28 May, 2007 Technology
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Get Directions From Your Cell Phone

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Now your cell phone may assist you better than anyone or anything else in finding the shortest way to the pharmacy, getting together with friends or keep an eye on your restless kids. Wireless companies are using technologies initially developed for emergency workers to help them find those in danger.

The relatively new mobile services that provide a cell phone navigation system have already attracted a great deal of attention as they make it easier for their customers to find bearings in an unfamiliar city, or get directions to a new shopping center or restaurant.

One of the customers decided to use a cell phone navigation as it verbally gives him directions how to get turn-by-turn to his new out-of-the-way customers. All he has to do is to punch in their address. He just threw out his old paper maps he previously used. Another customer opted for a cell phone navigation instead of a car-dashboard navigation system as the new system is really time-saving. He does not have to worry where he is going – the cell phone gives him precise directions.

Another user of the wireless service finds it easy to use while he is not sure whether it saves his time. The cell phone navigation has provided him with the route that has not always been the shortest one, yet it has always been the correct one.

If to take into account the growing number of customers, users do not pay much attention to the drawbacks of the cell phone navigation system. A private mobile navigation provider, Networks In Motion, has had a million customers. The number includes one-time users who paid $3 per day and the customers who pay about $10 per month. There are also other providers, such as Sprint Nextel Corp. Its service additionally provides local search functions from Ask.com and InfoSpace Inc , so cell phone users get directions to the location they need based on where they are.

Sprint, Verizon and Walt Disney Co. provides services for parents to let them monitor the place where their kids are at the moment. The only condition for users of the service - their kids should have a cell phone. If a child travels far away, parents receive an alert.

Helio, a SK Telecom and EarthLink Inc. venture, has further improved the technology – it allows friends to broadcast their location to each other when they are eager to arrange an unplanned meeting.

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