Speaking at the Open Mobile Summit in London, Qualcomm‘s Andrew Gilbert accidentally outlined a nightmarish scenario as to the course of dating in the future. Basically, you take a picture of the person you fancy and then ‘Google‘ them.
Using techniques which generally go under the heading of augmented reality, the picture taken with the cameraphone is used to identify your ‘intended’ and then matched to any information they provide on the net about themselves.
So you tap into their Facebook page, blog and/or twitter and use the information to try to work out their likes and interests. And whether they are single, of course.
In the example Gilbert gave, a male photographs a lovely lady at a dinner party and discovers her musical tastes. He then searches to find what bands are playing locally that match her choice.
Once he has snared his victim, he can also buy her a present and take her out to dinner. Gilbert didn’t mention searching for the nearest hotel to stay, which is another obvious use for augmented reality. Funny, that.
In fact, Gilbert’s intention with this example wasn’t to refer to Google at all but a Dublin based company Qualcomm acquired a couple of years back – Xiam Technologies.
This company has built a ‘relevance engine’ which provides discovery and recommendations. Xiam recently added an ability to take location into account as well.
Sadly, Xiam isn’t an iPhone or Android app. It’s a facility that has to be integrated into a service. However, a big clue is provided by the fact that Vodafone and Xiam have recently been nominated for a mobile entertainment award.
So Xiam very obviously is built into Vodafone’s 360 service. To enjoy the fruits of this alliance you have to acquire yourself a 360 handset from Vodafone.
Talking of 360, Vodafone’s intention was always to make a 360 client available for a wide range of handsets. TechEye hasn’t noticed much sign of that so far.
Goes to show just how much Qualcomm has changed from being merely a desinger of phone chips, doesn’t it?