back to article Skyhook offers 'Always-On' background STALKING feature

Location data provider Skyhook has debuted a new "Always-On" feature in version 4.6 of its mobile software development kit for coders. The Boston-based outfit said that more and more applications, particularly in the social networking market, demanded persistent background location information. But smartphones with location- …


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  1. Patrick O'Reilly


    Inertial navigation? Monitoring the barometer? Or guestimating from flight predicted course?

    1. Gannon (J.) Dick

      Re: How?

      Think I have this one figured out ...

      says: About 39,000 feet.

      article says: works to 40,000 feet

      Clearly their Marketing Department is high.

      1. Anonymous Coward 15

        Re: How?

        African, European, etc.

  2. Number6

    This is why...

    I don't enable social media apps on my phone. I don't want to be tracked, and it's bad enough that half the crap that comes pre-installed is probably doing so in ways I can't prevent, passing data without my consent.

    All phones and apps should have an easily-findable "Do not share personal data" button to prevent anything that the user didn't explicitly initiate from being sent.

    1. Battsman

      Re: This is why...

      If I read this correctly, the do not share personal data bit would get bypassed. Even with Wifi, GPS, and network tracking off, Skyhook would be determining your location based on its database of base stations and the base stations your phone is seeing. I interpret that as if this was on your phone, it would be bypassing the entries you made on the Do not share personal data buttons from your phone's OS...

  3. Dr Trevor Marshall
    Black Helicopters

    I keep an eye on my applications

    On Android, most background programs can be listed under "Settings>Applications>Running Services" from the home screen.

    An application called "AppTraffic" keeps track of all data used, and which program used it, since the last reboot. I found this invaluable in finding out "who phones home" and the amount of data they communicate.

    Incidentally, Google Play and Google Maps run background services you can't stop. Bad Google... But you can turn off GPS when you aren't using it, and that will stop Google Maps from using much CPU, or sending much data. Google Play has to be terminated from the Running Services screen. Unlike maps, it doesn't automatically restart until you run it, or reboot.

  4. Andrew Jones 2
    Thumb Up

    Google Play runs in the background so that it can update applications and listen for commands to install and update apps via the web interface (though like all other push messaging based apps - the app doesn't need to be running in the background to respond - Android will launch it automatically)

    In Ice Cream sandwich and Jelly Bean however - you can go in to the data usage screen and disable background data on a per-app basis to stop apps phoning home if you so require.

  5. Tom Jasper

    I reckon this companies on a fools errand

    Hole remover, left handed screw driver, water hammer, aqueous water and, my favourite from my scouting days, the legendary Sky Hook.

    1. Anonymous Coward 15

      Ah, you were in the Scouts too

      We once sent one of the younger boys to the little shop on the campsite with instructions to ask "How much are hookers?"

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