Mozilla dips its hands in geolocation data service

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Mozilla is currently working on its geolocation data service which will be using cell tower and Wi-Fi signals to provide a more privacy-aware option to the developers as compared to other available alternatives.

The Firefox browser maker announced on Monday that its service, which is in its early development stage, will focus more on mobile usage, although laptops could also use this service even without GPS hardware to quickly identify their approximate location.

Main commercial players of the Geolocation data include MaxMind, Google, Neustar IP Intelligence and IPligence. But no one yet offers a large public service option, claims Mozilla. Mozilla which is an open-source software developer is ready to deal with issues around privacy with its upcoming geolocation data service.

“None of the current companies offering this type of service have any incentive to improve on privacy,” commented Mozilla in its special Wiki devoted to the project.

“In order to do this assessment, we need to understand the technological challenges and get real data,” said the non-profit organization.

Cell towers, Wi-Fi and IP address information will be providing the data, Mozilla said. The company confirmed that the data generated by the service would be made available to the public. The Firefox maker has already rolled out the service on an experimental basis in select locations to some early adopters including Brazil, Russia, the U.S., Australia and Indonesia. People, who intend to provide data to Mozilla, will have to install the service using the company’s stumbler application.

Google is presently the leading geolocation data service provider operating its Maps Engine Platform to support companies builds maps to help run their business.