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September 12, 2007

Google SMS Adds Location-Based Personalization

Google SMS is a very useful service that lets you text your query and receive instant answers. In addition to web search results, you can find local businesses, get directions, check the weather and use it for unit conversions. The problem is that Google doesn't know your location, so all your messages have to include information about your location, especially for local searches.

Now you can save your location by sending a SMS that contains:
set location [city, zip code, address]

To check the weather you only need to send "weather" instead of "weather 90210". This minimizes the text you need to type, so it saves time and effort.

Google SMS is available in the US, Canada, Germany, Japan, Spain at, but this new feature works only in the US.

Google Maps also has an option to set a default location, which is used to personalize your search results. "For those users who have provided a default location in Google Maps, Google will personalize results based on that location. For example, if a user has entered a default location into Google Maps and types in library, the results will bring up the user’s local library."


  1. Awesome points on Google.

  2. Is this a new feature, or simple a new announcement?

  3. I don't understand why Google can't work out your location. I've seen services which can text you back the phone mast ID you're using and the location of where that phone mast is, so why can't it just serve results for that area by default? It would only be a few miles out in rural areas and that's accurate enough to send you the weather.

  4. @China Internet Marketing:
    It's a new feature.

    That's interesting. But these services must have some partnerships with carriers. Can you give some examples?

  5. Telstra in Australia do location based services (eg. Whereis Maps -

    As you mention though, I assume Google would have to partner with the carrier.

    Would be nice to see the Google SMS service here in Oz too, however... how long will SMS based services be around for... surely web services or things like Google Maps and Gmail java applets are what is next.

  6. Interesting, please check on the 19.11.07 and check patent pending no: PCT/DK/2006/00258 - I think someone will get them a surprice ;)

  7. google just wanaa be monster of every thing!!!!