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Tracking Traffic Jams With Cell Phones 130

kaufmanmoore writes, "Companies and governments are looking to alternatives to expensive radars and road sensors to track traffic jams. Two Atlanta-based companies are aiming to use data from wireless carriers to mark how fast phones are moving and overlaying that with maps to calculate traffic conditions. One of the companies, AirStage, has already partnered with Sprint-Nextel and the Georgia DOT to cover Atlanta's notorious traffic. The plans raise obvious privacy concerns over the usage of the data of your cell phone's location and the accuracy of this data." From the article: "[The] systems rely on wireless companies allowing them to process the data from their towers that calculate the position of each phone about twice a second when it's being used and once every 30 seconds when it's not. [One company's technology] can track vehicles to within 330 feet without using Global Positioning System satellites. Its software is designed to weed out the difference between pedestrians and drivers, then crunch it into detailed color-coded maps that show average speeds along roadways."

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