Geotagging Imagery and Video

IsWHERE is a log of my thoughts, reflections, and news/blog links on the emergence of image and video geospatial tagging. On May5th this year, I opened a second blog to deal with more detailed aspects of tools for FalconView and TalonView can be found at RouteScout. Trends I want to try and follow are the various disruptions resulting from spatial smart-phones, how many GPS devices are out there, smart-cameras, and other related news. And yes, I have a business interest in all of this. My company Red Hen has been pioneering this sort of geomedia for more than a decade.

So beyond a personal blog, I also provide a link to IsWHERE a shareware tool created by Red Hen Systems to readily place geoJPEG or geotagged imagery and soon GEM full motion media kept on your own computer(s) into Google Earth/Map from your File Manager media selection. Works great for geotagged images from Nikon, Ricoh, Sony, iPHONE, Android and all geo-smartphones that can create geotagged images. IsWhere - read about it

IsWhere Free Download (XP and VISTA)


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Thursday, February 28, 2008

One Billion Mobile Phones in 2007!

Blockbuster year for mobile phones

More than 1 billion phones were sold globally for the first time in 2007, a 16 percent increase from 2006 sales

With more than 1 billion phones sold globally for the first time, 2007 was a banner year for mobile phone sales. As sales continue to grow, the big questions this year are whether global market leader Nokia can expand in North America, and whether Motorola can stop its slide.

Worldwide sales of mobile phones ended up surpassing 1.15 billion units in 2007, a 16 percent increase from 2006 sales of 990.9 million, according to figures from Gartner. Emerging markets, especially China and India, are now the driver for growth, with many people in the countries now buying their first phone.

Nokia continues to dominate. It sold 435 million mobile phones last year, and gained a market share of more than 40 percent for the first time during the fourth quarter, according to Gartner. During 2007, Nokia's market share was 37.8 percent. It is followed by Motorola, Samsung, Sony Ericsson, and LG. Everyone except for Motorola, which lost its second place to Samsung during the fourth quarter, increased its market share.

For the full year, Motorola's market share was 14.3 percent, down from 21.1 percent. Samsung increased its market share from 11.8 percent to 13.4 percent.

Sony Ericsson and LG saw their share increase by less than 1 percent, to 8.8 percent and 6.8 percent, respectively.

Looking forward to this year, sales will continue to grow, according to Gartner. Nokia has the chance to extend its lead even further, with growth in North America the key. "In most markets, Nokia's market share is larger than 40 percent; in North America, it's close to 10 percent," said Carolina Milanesi, research director at Gartner. The Finnish phone giant has tried, and failed, to crack the North American market for many years. But changes in the market will help Nokia, according to Carolina Milanesi.

"Verizon has said it plans to open its network, which might be more on paper than in reality. But North American carriers are starting to realize they need to be more flexible than in the past. For Nokia, and everyone else, it means not having to build Verizon-specific phones, and faster time to market," she said.

In 2008, Nokia will also need to continue to improve its portfolio, offering not only more applications and functions, but also novel designs and improved user interfaces.

Nokia has recently received criticism for not releasing phones equipped with touch-based user interfaces.

"I don't think it matters that Nokia is a little late to the market, as long as it gets it right. Nokia will have to 'wow' users, otherwise it will be crucified," said Milanesi.

Nokia was also late to the market with 3G phones, but became the biggest vendor in the end. "Nokia built a platform, and was able to release a lot of phones, which made it No. 1," said Milanesi. She also thinks Sony Ericsson can grow its market share during 2008.

"Sony Ericsson has a very interesting lineup. With the addition of Windows Mobile, it has a chance to grow in North America," said Milanesi.

A big question for 2008 is the future of Motorola's mobile phone business. If it decides to sell, it's likely that the buyer will be a Chinese vendor, like ZTE.

"If it [ZTE] has the money," Milanesi said.

Friday, February 01, 2008

100 Million GPS SmartPhones?

Wireless Developer Net

Wellingborough - February 1, 2008 – The big names in the digital camera world are all at PMA from today and there is no doubt that GPS will be a hot topic amongst attendees. The reason for this is a host of recent announcements from GPS companies such as Air Semiconductors, SiRF, Qualcomm, u-blox, Glonav and Geotate (NXP Software’s spinoff). These companies are finally paving the way for intelligent integration of GPS in digital cameras.

All the major GPS IC companies are looking at the digital camera market because of the volumes involved (over 100million units shipped in 2006 and growing) and the interest that digital camera manufacturers are showing in the technology. These manufacturers have been looking at GPS technology for years now and they have all been facing the issue of the usage mode of digital cameras (click and go). This conflicts directly with GPS, which can require tens of seconds (or sometimes minutes) in order to get a location fix (TTFF).

As outlined in IMS Research’s report “The Worldwide Market for GPS/GNSS-enabled Portable Devices”, solving this conflict is a key element for a successful uptake of the technology in the market. Matia Grossi, author of the report, said “camera manufacturers are unsure of traditional solutions because they are too power hungry, too expensive and take too long to get a location fix. The imminent arrival of GPS-enabled cameraphones, has placed increased emphasis on addressing this capability. Furthermore in the past years their margins have thinned significantly, with the commoditization of their products and the competition from the cellular market, making the issue even more complicated. At the moment there are limited GPS-enabled solutions, mostly in the high-end SLR market using external (and expensive) devices”.

“A new wave of GPS techniques are emerging that will solve the issue in different and innovative ways. As a result, IMS Research’s forecasts that the GPS camera market will show very strong growth over the next 5 years growing from a sub-million unit market in 2006, with a CAGR of over 200%. Currently, two of the most interesting ones are those brought to the market by Geotate and Air Semiconductor.