Geolocation is the identification of the real geographical location of an object such as a mobile phone, an Internet-connected computer terminal, or a radar source. Geolocation may also be referred to as the practice of assessing a location or an actual assessed location. The term is commonly used to refer to the capability of mobile devices and as well as online services to assess and specify a user’s specific geographical location via technical means. Technical means in this case refer to GPS or satellite tracking, mobile, tablet, or phone location, Media Access Control(MAC), Exchangeable Image File Format (EXIF), radio frequency (RF), IP address/web identification, Wi-Fi hot-spot identification, and other wireless positioning systems.
In IP address location identification, information such as country, region/city, postal/zip code, latitude, longitude, and time zone may be included. More extensive data sets may determine other parameters such as the Internet Service Provider (ISP), domain name, connection speed, company name, proxies, language, NAICS codes, home/business, including others.
How Geolocation Works
Typically, geolocation works through a pre-built GPS in any device that propagates the device’s latitudinal and longitudinal coordinates. It can also use other related technologies to identify the latitude and longitude coordinates.
These coordinates are then identified on a map to provide a complete address which includes a country, region, city, town, street address, and building name.
If you use a smartphone, you can easily download geolocation apps for iOS or Android. These apps have two principal functions. One, they report your location to other users and two, they associate real-world locations such as airports, coffee shops, restaurants, events, among others to your location. For example, if you visit New York City, the app in your phone will identify all the important locations in the city. These apps also allow to search for a specific location when a user asks questions like: where am i for example.
The reason why geolocation apps that run on mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets provide a richer experience is that the relevant data that you send and receive changes as your location changes.
Significance of Geolocation
Geolocation basically helps users identify location details such as a country, region, city, town, and even street address. As long as you have a GPS-enabled device or have access to other means such as Wi-Fi, radio frequency, including others, finding your way through a certain location should be easy.
You can easily access restaurant listings, cinema theaters, clothe shops, events, clubs and others in the area that you are in. You can as well share your location on social media platform to notify your friends of your specific location.
Besides location identification, geolocation enables webmasters and marketers to revise and adjust their marketing strategies based on their customers’ location and proximity to goods and services. This way, they are able to get as physically close to their customers and possible.
Also, geolocation enables marketers and website owners to identify the location from which they are receiving a huge traffic volume. This way, they are able to provide goods and services that suit their needs. It also helps them to provide the right content on their websites and even offer translation based on the customers’ language.