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Tuesday, 16 July 2013 07:10

Aussie startup Geepers aims to dominate location services market

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Geepers, an Australian startup backed by Internode founder Simon Hackett has unveiled its ambitious plan to be the primary source of location information for people and premises, globally.

According to Hackett, "Geepers has the potential to become the most popular way that Internet users will dynamically and accurately locate the people, places and things that matter to them, anywhere in the world."

Individuals can sign up to Geepers (www.geepers.com) for free and input up to nine fixed locations, such as home, office and one that represents their current location, derived from their mobile device.

Geepers ignores traditional address systems and instead relies on an exact geo-physical location created by the user or location owner. Each location is then given a unique alphanumeric name, based on the name of the company or person. This information can then be used by others to locate the individual, either manually or via integration with the Geepers system.

For example, Geepers envisages that courier companies could tap into its database to determine whether they should deliver a package to someone's home, or their office, or hold off delivery because the recipient was not home. Fastway Couriers is already trialling this function, and Geepers' founder, David Whitfield, told iTWire that he was already in discussions with other courier companies.

Geepers says "There are multiple location based needs that can be met by Geepers and the company is already in discussions with a number of local and international logistics companies on how the technology can meet commercial needs."

Geepers has global ambitions, and in many countries a major application is expected to be useful simply for locating physical addresses. While many countries have a well-developed system for locating premises (number, street, suburb) many do not.

Whitfield said the idea for Geepers came to him while he spent 20 minutes waiting in a taxi in China as the driver tried to get the GPS co-ordinates of his destination into the car's in-car navigation system, because the physical address information was not sufficiently precise.

Geepers can be accessed via a browser and a mobile app for Android and IOS will be introduced in August. The company also hopes that in-car navigation system manufacturers will integrate with Geepers. "It is anticipated that in the near future in-car GPS device manufacturers will be able to access the Geepers Name Server (GNS) to enable their system to navigate to destinations that have a !Geepers address."

Geepers also envisages the service being used by any organisation that wants to publicise the locations of its services, such as: ATM locations for financial institutions; local attraction listings for tourism bodies; bars and restaurants; petrol station locations; building location for public sector agencies, electrical distribution infrastructure for utility companies; house locator for real estate companies; and, brand loyalty programs, for example local restaurants which serve particular wines.

Many of these functions are already available but Whitfield argues that the means of acquiring this information are fragmented: you might need a specific app to find the location of a bank's ATMs.

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