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3 posts from February 2009

February 25, 2009

WorldMate Wins GSMA Award!

Our latest (but not last) award - WorldMate was named the "Most Innovative Mobile Application in a Vertical Marketby the GSMA at the Mobile World Congress last week. The GSMA is the world's largest and most prestigious association of mobile-related companies, spanning 219 countries, and uniting more than 750 of the world's mobile operators, as well as 200 companies in the broader mobile ecosystem. This makes this one of the most prestigious awards out there. We were pitted against dozens of other companies, and I believe the messages that resonated with the judges were:

* Travel is going to be a huge business on mobile
* WorldMate is the leader of the pack - with the best-of-breed mobile travel application and clear thought leadership

Congratulations to the team, and Kudos to Ian, whose been so good with the presentation Apple are considering him for the next iPhone launch, in Steve Jobs' absence...


February 22, 2009

Google Maps and WorldMate Live

Last week, we posted a quick tutorial on using WorldMate Live's free mapping facilities. We got dozens of responses from people who want this to integrate with the Google Maps mobile application that they are using ( Lots of people are using this application, either because it's better than what came with their devices, or because the built-in app (e.g. BlackBerry Maps) does not have content for where they live - e.g. Australia.

It is our goal at WorldMate to support all popular mapping apps and in fact we spent a lot of time trying to get an API for Google Maps that will allow us to integrate with it. Alas, it seems like the good people at Google are just not interested in this extra traffic we can provide them. There is no Google Maps for mobile API as yet for BlackBerry, Windows Mobile or Symbian. And given the fact many developers have been asking for this for years, it's pretty clear that is a policy with Google. Whether this stems from content licensing issues (a frequent issue with mapping licenses) or just competitive policy we don't know, although we assume the latter.

What can users do?  One thing you can try is petition Google. They have a Help Forum where you can post a question. Perhaps if enough people did it, they will enable this.

Additional suggestions? We'd love to hear from you. Post your comment below.

February 15, 2009

Using WorldMate Live’s free mapping services to find your way

Finding your way around an unfamiliar city is always one of the most time-consuming and stress-inducing activities while traveling on business. And it’s not just about how to get from point A to point B – it’s also about how to “geo-plan” your trip optimally – schedule the meetings in logical order so that you don’t zig-zag across town multiple times, stay in a hotel that is near your meeting or near public transportation etc.

In WorldMate Live, we do our best to simplify this for you. When we create your itinerary, we automatically geo-locate any address in the itinerary – whether we got it automatically from the confirmation emails you’ve forwarded (e.g. hotel or car rental addresses), or we got them from your meetings (if you have the meeting location in your calendar – we’d parse that too). This means that by the time you’re traveling – you can just click the item, click “map” – and we’ll show you the item on the map.


Click to enlarge


If you’re using GPS navigation software like TelMap, TeleNav or AT&T Navigator – you can set WorldMate up to automatically open those instead, so you can navigate directly to your destination. In the main menu click “Settings” then “Mapping Application” to select your preferred mapping provider.


Click to enlarge     Click to enlarge


These locations are also shown on your itinerary and map in the WorldMate Live web application. This means that even before you leave home – or before you leave your hotel in the morning, you can view your entire day on the map. In the itinerary view you can see whether all your items were correctly geo-coded – or perhaps you’re missing an address or have an incomplete one!  This way – you won’t be surprised that you have the wrong address, when you’re already looking for it.


Itinerary View With Address Validity Marked:

Click to enlarge


Click the small map, or “Enlarge” to view a map of your entire trip. This enables you to see where your meetings, hotel, airports etc. are relative to each other. Click any item in the list on the left to view it on the map. If you’re using public transportation – you can find stations nearest to your meetings by zooming and panning.


Map View of Your Trip:


If you need to book a hotel – WorldMate Live simplifies finding the right one – one that is near your meetings and matches your preferences. Just click the “Need a hotel?” banner on the top right. You can select an actual location from your itinerary – a meeting for instance, or a location in the destination city. The results are shown directly on the map!


Want to see a live demo? Watch this clip:

Have questions? Ideas? Suggestions?   Post them here!

-        Nadav