Apple is trying to make the indoor GPS the next hot selling thing in the market. The Wall Street Journal has just reported that Apple has acquired WiFiSlam. WiFiSlam is an indoor GPS startup, which will enable the smartphones to determine it’s own location. Not just your own location, it will also help you identify your friends current location. The only drawback being in real time, it will present only up to 2.5 meters in accuracy.
Apple paid massive sum of 20 million dollars to acquire the GPS start up. Apple refused to give in detail of the specific terms of the deal. However, Apple has confirmed their latest possession by saying that:
“The two-year-old startup has developed ways for mobile apps to detect a phone user’s location in a building using Wi-Fi signals. It has been offering the technology to application developers for indoor mapping and new types of retail and social networking apps. The company has a handful of employees, and it’s co-founders include former Google software engineering intern Joseph Huang.”
WiFiSlam seems to be part of Apple’s continued effort to build up it’s location capabilities, and is likely a sign that indoor GPS is just starting to get recognized and might soon become the next big thing. Apple had gone ahead and purchased companies like C3 Technologies and Poly9 to popularize the same.
For it’s part, the GPS start up WiFiSlam wants to “engage with users at the scale that personal interaction actually takes place” and foresees it’s future use cases as “step-by-step indoor navigation to product-level retail customer engagement, to proximity-based social networking.”
WiFiSlam has received private funding from investors. AngelList’s Naval Ravikant, Google’s Don Dodge and Start Fund’s Felix Shipman are the ones who made charitable donations.