Blis Gets Vertical: Adding Altitude as the Third Dimension of Location Data
London, Singapore, June 18th 2015 – Researchers and data engineers at Blis have added height – or more specifically altitude – to the data available for tracking anonymised consumer location behaviour globally.
Blis is a global advertising technology and big data company, headquartered in London, that uses location and demographic data to define digital audiences for advertisers.
The company is developing an SDK for app developers and publishers allowing it to access and analyse data from the barometric sensor found in most new smartphones, via apps on the device.
Adding altitude into the mix of location and behavioural data will deliver more context and audience understanding for advertisers, helping to create even more accurate ways to map location behaviour. Knowledge of altitude opens the door to further creative ways to target consumers, especially within high-rise, high density cities around the world.
App publishers, developers and even consumers will also be able to generate revenues by allowing Blis to monetise the location data gathered via the Blis SDK.
“Location isn’t simply about where you are at any given time – it’s also about the context of what you have done or are doing right now, and how you are interacting with your environment. We all think and see in three dimensions – so why not measure location in 3D too? That’s the simple idea behind what we are developing,” said Greg Isbister, CEO of Blis.
Ben Phillips, Global Head of Mobile at MediaCom, which works with Blis on location-aware campaigns for its clients, said adding altitude as a third dimension of location is a very interesting move.
“We’re always looking at cutting edge developments in mobile and to understand how our brands can use it in their campaigns. We’re in a constantly moving market that no one can predict so we will always want to work with companies like Blis that develops best of breed platform solutions, which we can test with our portfolio of innovative clients,” said Phillips.
At present, the technology is still in the R&D phase – but has the potential to be commercialised quite quickly, said Isbister. “The idea of looking at air pressure is new, and with anything new there’s loads of potential as well as technical challenges. This could be hugely relevant for companies who are looking to understand the movement of consumers in high-density cities like Beijing, Singapore, Tokyo, London or New York – where someone is likely to live, work and shop in buildings that are many stories high, and where location based on two dimensions isn’t accurate enough.”
Barometric sensors are commonly used in mobile phones to give better GPS performance, and more powerful sensors are starting to be used in other devices – including smartwatches and other wearables.
“With mobiles, tablets and now wearable devices, the currency of context is growing exponentially. This means gathering and analysing more kinds of data as we become more connected to the environments we move in. This creates more ways for advertisers to understand the context of device movement and behaviour and cutting edge companies will find smart ways of using this insight,” said Isbister.
Tags: Altitude, Ben Phillips, Blis, greg isbister, location