Analyzing the potential of the mobile location-based services across the world
Location data is gradually becoming a crucial part of the mobile experience and facilitates some of the most popular mobile apps. Location data has become indispensable for geo-social networking, navigation and travel, retail and real estate searches, and mobile marketing and advertising. Be it for locating friends in the area, finding the closest restaurant or advertising consumers who are in the neighbourhood, location-based services (LBS) allows users to access to relevant, up-to-date information about their surroundings along with allowing businesses to reach out to their customers with products and services.
LBS witnessing increased investments
For mobile network operators, LBS represent an additional revenue stream that can be generated from their investments in fixed infrastructure. For the end user, these services can help reduce confusion, improve the internet usage experience and deliver high-quality service options. A key driver of LBS will be a degree of fit between the system's technical feasibility and the overall marketing strategy guiding its usage. According to 2017 Global Location Trends Report, 25% of marketing budgets are being spent on location-based marketing and over 50% brands are using location data to target customers. Location is fast emerging as a critical element of digital marketing for brands and businesses. Business usage of location-based marketing is on the rise across the world. The U.S. witnessed 5% in LBS from 2016 to 2017, Canada 6%, the UK saw a 7% increase, and Singapore was 3%. However, only Germany saw a 3% decline in location-based marketing usage for the same time period.
Recent trends in location-based services
The ever growing popularity of cloud-based big data analytics is one of the biggest trends gaining traction in the global mobile location-based services market. Big data analytics offer compelling insights on consumer buying patterns to help retailers enhance their sales volume as well as customer search experiences. Location-as-a-Service companies are increasingly using big data analytics to offer cloud-based web services and mobile LBS that seamlessly integrate real-time location information and data analytics.
Additionally, location-based marketing is being increasingly used across different industries to deliver product or service promotional messages based on user location. Many companies are leveraging location-based apps for targeted advertisements to reach potential consumers in real time, and this trend is expected to aid the growth of this segment in the coming years.
What does the future hold for LBS?
When talking about technology, the demand for Indoor LBS and vertical positioning is the highest. A number of start-ups are working in this segment by integrating wireless sensors, geo-magnetic field and beacons with the GPS. Usage and application of the LBS is also expected to witness a significant shift, powered by Artificial Intelligence. Driverless cars with integrated LBS and AI will create a huge impact on transportation infrastructure. Augmented reality is yet another segment where the real and the virtual world are combined to deliver a broad range of application. The relevancy of such applications will be highly dependent on the location data going forward. The future may also experience the integration of Indoor and Outdoor LBS, which will facilitate a seamless M2M (machine to machine) communication.