Nokia Offers Location-Based Security Service - InformationWeek

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1/20/2009
03:11 PM
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Nokia Offers Location-Based Security Service

The service will allow GPS-enabled S60 handsets to identify where friends and family are located, and track when people leave a predefined area.

Nokia is giving location-based services a boost by teaming with Securitas to offer a way for users to keep tabs on friends and family.

The Securitas Safe-2-Go suite initially will include four services and will work with all S60 handsets that have a GPS chipset. "Assist" enables users to contact Securitas' alarm central with the touch of a button in case of an emergency. Once contacted, security specialists can call for more help, know where the customer is located, and know which people related to the handset user need to be contacted.

Two of the services, "Find" and "Friend," let a customer know their friends and family are located. The service "Zone" sends an SMS message to the handset if another user has left a predefined area like a home or school.

"Mobile phones already today give increased feeling of safety because your friends and family are only an SMS or a phone call away," said Christophe Joyau, spokesman for Nokia, in a statement. "By making Securitas' services Assist and Zone mobile, we combine the possibilities of built in GPS and our knowledge about mobility with Securitias' leading knowledge when it comes to security and safety."

As more and more handsets become equipped with GPS chipsets, companies are increasingly trying to integrate location-based services. This move is also part of the handset maker's larger strategy to provide additional services as a way to draw more customers to Nokia phones.

"Securitas and Nokia share the vision of helping people feel close to what matters to them and that is exactly what these services do," said Magnus Friberg, director of marketing and business development for Securitas, in a statement. "There is a large and growing interest for these types of safety and security-oriented services. The cooperation with Nokia makes it possible to make our services mobile and quickly reach the mass market."

Safe-2-Go will be commercially available during the first half of 2009 in Sweden, and it will be rolled out to other markets later in the year.

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