GPS to become a handset must-have

It’s funny how the public perception of certain technologies changes with time. Not so very long ago, the “Big Brother is watching you” syndrome was still a very real fear for many consumers. Yet now, with CCTV accepted in our cities as an antidote to security threats, the idea that somebody up there knows exactly where you are is almost becoming a security blanket.

And this is the backdrop that is enabling location-based services to permeate society to the extent that within the next year or so, GPS will become a must-have in all manner of portable electronics. Indeed, analyst Berg Insight is predicting that global shipments of GPS-enabled handsets will grow from 175 million units in 2007 at a CAGR of 26.2% to reach 560 million units in 2012.

Such rapid adoption of GPS technology will certainly enable a range of new location–based services. But will the “man in the street” ever be truly convinced that he isn’t being tracked by an undesirable agency?

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About the Author

Electronicstalk and this Editor's Blog are edited by Laurence Marchini

Laurence Marchini

Laurence Marchini began his career in the electronics press with the Institution of Electrical Engineers in 1980, cutting his teeth on a variety of learned and member publications, ranging from IEE Proceedings to Electronics and Power. He moved on to join the launch team of the innovative weekly Electronics Express in 1986, and became Editor just 18 months later. Sadly, Electronics Express lasted just four and a half years, wound up by the infamous Robert Maxwell. However, Laurence had already jumped ship and joined the world of electronics PR with the agency of the 1990s, Smith and Jones Communications. It seemed Laurence was lost to the world of journalism. But after 11 years we managed to lure him back as launch editor of Electronicstalk. Laurence is married to Sally and has a young son, Alexander.

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