One of the few things holding back the next generation of location-aware apps is battery life. Nobody wants a smartphone that drains when it’s sitting unused in a pocket. Now Skyhook says they’ve solved that problem. Via Computerworld:
Some location services query a server each time they update the user’s location. Skyhook downloads compressed information about Wi-Fi access points and cell towers in a five-to-ten-mile radius the first time a smartphone registers a particular location. As long as the user remains in that radius, the device can determine location without calling a server. Fewer server calls means longer battery life.
This will allow a lot of apps to do more things while running in the background, and allow advertisers to target you with ads as you pass by shops and malls. The good always comes with the bad.