Mega CEO and daughter want location app to be found

Mega CEO and daughter want location app to be found

CEO of cloud file storage service Mega, Vikram Kumar, has joined his daughter in creating a location-based app called Guidar that helps people find each other.

The first step was creating a utility that allowed people to give others permission to locate them via their smartphone's GPS, using a contact in their address book or entering a mobile number.

People are shown on a map along with the direction and distance to meet up. They can use photos to make it easier to be found, and share their location for up to two hours.

Likely scenarios are parents picking their children up from school, groups of friends out on the town and travellers.

Kumar hopes to develop the app further to make the most of iOS' iBeacon, which allows location to be transmitted via Bluetooth, an alternative for indoor use when GPS often won't work.

While others eye iBeacon as a chance to push marketing messages to in-store consumers, advertising and marketing aren't an attraction option for Guidar, because it wants to be seen as a trusted location-based service, says Kumar.

It also isn't designed to replace social location apps, he says

"There are a couple of apps that are more family location oriented," says Kumar. "They tend to be persistent location of a small number of people. A number of apps do social location for finding Facebook friends in the same area.

"I felt the gap was there were none that recognise how sensitive people are to their location information. A typical example is a teenager who's quite happy to be located but they don't want their parents to track them all the time."

The app, developed by Sush Mobile, is currently only for iOS, but an Android version is in the works.

It could also be a back end for airlines, cruise ship operators and conference hosts to add location to their apps, Kumar says.

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