RealTime IT News

Finnish Companies Launch Geomessaging Solution

[London, ENGLAND] Two Finnish companies, Oy Arbonaut Ltd and Benefon Oyj announced Tuesday a geomessaging solution that will enable ISPs to offer precision location-based services for businesses and consumers.

To create the solution, the two companies have combined their products, Arbonaut contributing GeoMessaging Suite 1.0 to work with the Benefon Esc! GPS+GSM personal navigation phone.

Jukka Nieminen, director of product marketing at Benefon, said that for the first time service providers will be able to offer precision location-based services for mobile users.

"The Arbonaut GeoMessaging Suite 1.0 fully leverages the unique capabilites of Benefon Esc!, enabling Arbonaut and Benefon to offer service providers a complete end-to-end solution for new precision location services," confirmed Nieminen.

Benefon's phone uses a 12-channel GPS navigator that accurately pinpoints the user's location on a map. It provides various indicators and tools, including waypoints, routes, guide, and odometer, together with phone and organizer functions.

Said to be ideal for "sailors, bikers and skiers," the Benefon Esc! can direct the user to friends, special points of interest and services. What's more, it is easy to use in comparison to the navigation systems of the past -- and the user does not need any special knowledge to get started.

"Only recently these kind of services were just fiction, but today with the launch our first geomessaging product we can finally say that geomessaging has become reality," said Risto Jalovaara, chief executive of Arbonaut.

The Arbonaut element of the combo provides all the messaging functionality, including support for cross-media messages such as between phones, e-mail and asset tracking devices. It enables users to compose, send and store messages across the various carrier media.

For the technically-minded, the solution uses the new, open Mobile Phone Telematics Protocol (MPTP) and Mobile Map Service Protocol (MMSP) application interfaces. As Jalovaara points out, all GSM and Internet users can use the Arbonaut services, but with their support for precision mobile positioning the Benefon Esc! and Benefon Track GSM+GPS wireless instruments are proving to be ideal clients for geomessaging.

Benefon is listed in Helsinki Stock Exchange (HEX), while Arbonaut is venture funded by 3i Finland, Sitra and Teknia Invest.