This entry was posted on Sunday, December 23rd, 2007 at 2:38 pm and is filed under All Posts, Usability and Technology. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.
I know there are technologies to friend-locate via GPS coordinates between two or more enabled cell phones. But has anyone transferred that to a phone/car pairing?
1. You have a GPS unit in the car (built-in or aftermarket) and GPS on your phone. You “pair” them once (perhaps via Bluetooth exchange), and from then on, as you leave a mall or stadium you launch the CarFinder application. CarFinder shows you a single button: find my car now. (Obviously there can be options, such as finding a previously bookmarked place, or finding another paired car — say, your spouse’s.)
The system requests the satellite system to ping your car once for its location, then correlates that with the GPS data being provided by your phone. Your results — ideally overlayed on an accurate map — are then displayed, together with the option of starting direction-giving. Since GPS provides altitude date, too, it could tell you if you’re too low or high (on the wrong floor) of a parking complex.
2. Same program concept, but if your car isn’t GPS enabled, your cell phone handles both ends of the calculation. For this, you have to remember to activate “Remember this location” before leaving the vicinity of your car. (If the car has been towed, this will be less effective than the first option!, in addition to the extra user burden of having to activate the system when parking.)
Seems like a relatively small but very fabulously useful application. I’ve seen people take a picture of their parking area to refer to later. Does CarFinder already exist? It should.