Non-criminal/non-terrorist applications of location-detection

Handsets help to unstick jams
Mobile phones could soon be helping Finland manage heavy traffic on its roads.
BBC News, 22 January 2003
Baby-sitting via satellite
Satellite technology is being used in the US to keep track of children and offer peace of mind to parents. A wristwatch containing miniature Global Positioning System (GPS) technology has just gone on sale.
BBC News, 12 August 2002
Children's tracking device invented
Children getting lost in theme parks could become a thing of the past thanks to an invention pioneered at Birmingham University. Engineers at the university have developed a bangle that emits a signal, allowing missing youngsters to be easily located. The "Geobangle" uses global positioning by satellite, or GPS - the same system used in some cars as a navigational aid.
BBC News, 8 April 2003
Watching Your Kids' Every Move
... Beginning in 2005, parents will be able to track their children through their cell phones - that's when all phones must be equipped by law with GPS-like systems.
CBS News, 6 January 2002
Mobile phone tracks heartbeats
A device that attaches to a normal mobile phone and allows patients to check their breathing and heart rate has been developed by researchers in the US. The device combines an antenna and sensor which can pick up respiratory and heart activity when connected to a mobile phone and placed in front of a patient. The information could then be sent to a remote health monitoring centre using the existing telephone network.
BBC News, 14 December 2002
Mobiles used to monitor asthma
Asthma suffers could soon benefit from a system which allows them to keep check their condition via mobile phone.
BBC News, 3 March 2003
Will Big Brother track you by cell phone?
Thanks to car PCs and Global Positioning System (GPS) receivers in wireless phones and handhelds, location services soon will eagerly offer roadside assistance, traffic updates, and route planning as well as shopping and services guides. But what will these services do with the information they gather on your habits and whereabouts?
PC World, 19 April 2001
Your Cell Phone Is Watching You
Tracking devices were once a staple of old science fiction and action movies. One typical scene: The good guy slaps a tracer on the villain's getaway car and follows him -- at a safe distance -- to his lair for the final showdown. Or a team of leering, white-coated technicians forces a microchip-sized homing device into the hero's brain cavity. These days, such scenarios aren't so fantastical. For blanketing the United States are 140 million human-tracking devices: cellular phones.
Valley Advocate, 4 April 2002
Invention aims to keep children safe
A Kent man has invented a device which can keep track of youngsters, as a survey reveals parents are more protective of their children following the murders of Holly Wells and Jessica Chapman ... Kidcontact uses both global positioning satellite (GPS) and mobile phone technology, letting parents know exactly where their children are.
BBC News, 19 September 2002
NHS patients tracked by satellite
... A touch-screen mobile phone logs information inputted by the ambulance driver and relays it back to the control centre.
BBC News, 4 December 2005
Mobile aid for diabetes patients
Mobile phones are being used to try to make the lives of people with diabetes easier by high-speed data transfer.
BBC News, 23 October 2004
Being tracked down by your mobile
Carrying a mobile phone? Then someone could be tracking your every movement and know where you are. Big Brother? Perhaps, but it could just be a Mexican restaurant wanting to invite you in for dinner.
BBC News, 23 June 2003
Mobiles to save disaster victims
Scientists from Toshiba's research labs in Bristol have come up a way to exploit the ubiquity of the mobile phone to help find victims in disasters.
BBC News, 26 June 2003
Call of the sea saves father and son
A brief signal picked up by two mobile phone masts was central to the rescue of stricken sailors
The Times, 2 June 2005
New devices may put children in danger
Mobile phone tracking systems, similar to those used by police, are becoming available to the public. Parents can subscribe to a range of new location services, which offer to trace the location of a child’s phone. In urban areas they can trace a phone to within 30 metres.
The Times, 12 July 2004
With GPS, KDDI finds a new cell-phone audience
... GPS receivers are widely used in the United States and Europe by mountaineers and sailors ... But those offerings do not display the kind of interactive map that KDDI's do ... location. . KDDI's GPS feature has inspired a host of practical applications. About 50 content suppliers now offer location-linked services like restaurant guides that let users find eateries of their choice — say, a noodle shop — within 100 meters (330 feet) of wherever they happen to be. Navitime Co. sells a service through which users can display the shortest path to a destination, along with the nearest train station, the train schedule and the approximate time it will take to get there ...
International Herald Tribune, 28 March 2002
Relief tasks for text messaging
... Meanwhile, Orange's French unit has sent SMS messages to 3,200 customers who were traveling in the area of the tsunamis on Dec. 25 and 26, asking them to contact the French Foreign Ministry. . France Télécom, which owns Orange, said that the French government had requested the text messages to help account for its citizens. It is possible to identify mobile phone customers who were in the area and had their cellphones on through the registration of their phone numbers in a database of "roaming" customers.
International Herald Tribune, 4 January 2005
Mobile positioning: Track your friends
... That's because of the next wireless thing: mobile positioning. Yes, your mobile phone will serve as a location device as long as it is switched on ... Basically, operators can calculate where mobile phone users are based on their relative position to so-called base stations ... Police have used similar methods to find out if suspects were near a crime location, simply by checking whether phone calls where made near certain base stations ... emergency services have been able to locate fires and accidents, even if phone calls from people in need of help had been cut off. Now, it's finally time for commercial services ... We tested a handful of sample services ... FriendFinder is for everyone, not just sports fanatics: It knows a user's position in relation to friends or colleagues with mobile phones ...
ZDNet News, 1 September 2000

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