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Time-based web search app wins satellite navigation competition

UK: An app that allows the user to search for location specific information by the time it takes to get there has been chosen by heads of the UK space industry as the most promising new business in the sector.

iGeolise turns conventional distance-based web searching into ‘journey time searches’ and promises to double the number of relevant results you get when searching for location specific information from restaurant guides, property websites or online job listings for example.

Using satellite derived maps overlaid with public transport data, road travel time information and average walking speeds, it can rank and sort several thousand points by travel time virtually instantly.

It means rather than searching for jobs within a mile of your house you could now, for example, search for those that are within a 45 minute drive or public transport commute at 07:45 on a weekday morning.

“When we ask how far away something is we are generally not interested in answers in miles or metres,” said Charlie Davies, co-founder, Product & Technology director at iGeolise.

“What we want is something in hours and minutes and specific to the modes of transport available to us, but until now, this hasn’t been an option on websites or apps.

“Microsoft has said around half of all searches fail to return the result sought.

“Although results might be close distance-wise, they are actually a real pain to get to.

“The same searches are also missing out on a similar number of additional results which might be further away but the available transport infrastructure makes them very accessible.”

The UK Satellite Navigation Competition (UKSnC) is part of a global competition aimed at stimulating new innovations in satellite navigation for use in technologies like smartphone apps and location-based services.

Source: The IET