Location Apps: Here. Now.



Venture Beat says Loopt, the location-based social network, has reached deals with both Qualcomm and SiRF to give it unlimited dips of GPS data for one flat fee. It was announced at MobileBeat 2008 today.

Using GPS technology, Loopt figures out where you are, and by reference, where your friends or nearby interests are located. But the cost of accessing this location data, called a “dip”, has been prohibitive. It’s been a problem in selling location aware applications like Loopt to carriers, says Venture Beat.

Loopt has reached deals with both Qualcomm and SiRF to give it unlimited dips of GPS data for one flat fee.

The carriers and handset makers still have to buy into this new plan, but it’s more likely to happen now that Loopt has this deal.

Loopt has received lots of praise for their iPhone 3G apps that utilize the iPhone’s built-in GPS.

Other Location-Aware Apps for the iPhone (and other platforms) include:

  • Loopt – free: A Virtual Earth map allows you to see both friends and Yelp search results together.
  • AdMob: Mobile advertising that targets the audience and device you want
  • Funambol: Open platform design to push location aware ads and sync contacts with other phones, webmail systems & email clients.
  • Platial – free: Search or browse millions of Platial geobits – from food to arts and culture to activism to history to recreation and beyond.
  • ShoZu – Free: One-click uploading of camera phone videos and pictures to over 30 online social networks, blogs and photo sites. Can geo-tag your photos and videos.
  • Kyte Mobile Producer for iPhone: Instantly broadcast pictures as you take them, create slideshows from your iPhone’s picture gallery and chat with your audience real-time.
  • Ontela: Brings together a user’s mobile device, PC, and favorite online image services.
  • Where – free: Released by Ulocate on Sprint last year, it makes it easy for developers to build location-aware widgets.
  • Omnifocus – $19.99: It will use your location to help you create location-based to-do list.
  • Urban Spoon – free: A restaurant picker
  • Twitteriffic, Twinkle and Twittelator – free: Post Twitters and follow people. Twittelator lets you send a link to a map of your location and has a “Twitter 911″ feature.
  • NearPics – free: A location-aware photo browser. It uses your location to select local photos from Google’s Panoramio service.
  • Whrrl – free: Like Loopt, is shows friends and businesses on the same map but adds more browser functionality (showing places reviewed by friends).

Apple’s next significant release of the iPhone software will activate background push notifications, as well as enhanced GPS functionality, says BetaNews. Tweaks to the iPhone GPS code, may allow for truer navigation and allow developers to get around the restrictions blocking applications from running in the background on the device. The rumored 2.1 software release is expected around September.

Check out Mobile Beat’s Top Ten companies that were culled from the Mobile Beat’s Top 30.

Posted by Sam Churchill on .

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