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1000 (Nov 2012)

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What's for: Site offering services or coupons based on geolocalisation.
With the ever growing number of portable devices, most services tend to be offered taking into account the current location of the user, based on geolocalisation tools.

These tools are actually four: IP address, GPS, cellphone towers, and WiFi.

Your IP Address is a number that is assigned to your computer when it is participating in a connected network, like the Internet. Internet service providers often are responsible for ranges of IP addresses so many services can take your IP address and pass it through a database to then determine your location down to a fairly broad area (think to the county).

The simplest way to calculate position is using GPS coordinates. Modern phones are GPS-enabled, and are able to send a signal to several satellites in space that help triangulate your exact position. GPS calculations typically rely on having a clear line of sight to the sky, so they can be not accurate indoors.

Calculating location based on cell phone towers, known as GSM localization, works much like GPS. A cell phone signal is triangulated between three cell phones towers to help determine the user’s location.

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