Monetize LBS (Location Based Search)

A Telcom operator wants to monetize the Google LBS. Here is an  UTube Video demo of Google Earth LBS (Location Based Service) on iPod Touch, demonstrated by prof. Tsou. He demonstrates how Google Earth calculates his position through wireless triangulation and then lets him find an Italian restaurant and also read reviews and look at the menu of his choice.

Next, if he decides to dine in his chosen restaurant and also invite his friends. To ensure that he gets a place, he wants to reserve a place there. He presses a reserve button on the screen. He gets a reservation confirmation message from his Telco and also Rs 10 is deducted from his pre-paid card.

This Reserve button was displayed as part of the widget that looks up menu and reviews.

The Reserve button, appears on the screen based on the following  criteria:
1. The Widget calls a service in the Cloud, which uses the mobile client IP to do a reverse DNS Lookup. say it gets <some session id>
   The service then looks up the (CNAME or A) DNS entry for (Note: UDDI could also be used, but then no one uses UDDI these days ;)
2. The service then calls the Query Function of web service ( passing the restaurant's URL. The Telco service confirms that the Restaurant is participating in a program with the operator to honor reservation made on mobile.

When the user presses the Reservation button, the widgets makes a remote XML call to a secure service (which may be hosted on Google App Cloud). The service then calls the Reserve  Function of the Web Service ( passing the restaurant's URL and the Mobile caller's IP address.

The Reservation Service Hosted on the Telco's SDP (Service Delivery Platform), first authenticates the caller based on WS-Security Profile, then it contacts the SGSN passing the IP address to retrieve the subscriber's Identity. It then contacts the HSS (Home Subscriber Subsystem) to confirm if the subscriber has opted for premium VAS (Value Added Service) and then deducts Rs 10 using the appropriate  Charging function, [see figure 4.2 on page 17 of : 3GPP TS 32.240 ] version 8.5.0 Release 8
Finally the subscriber and the restaurant manager/usher gets a SMS confirming the reservation made the the subscriber along with date and time of the validity.

More features can be added to this service, like having a connectivity with the restaurant's teller system to ensure that indeed there is space alternatively, the restaurant not having an online connectivity can allocate a fixed number of reserved seats to the Telco for its subscribers. The telco service can then decrement from the blocked seats to ensure that the subscriber gets an assured seating.    

The Telecom operators in India have to pay to Govt. of India,  2% to 6% (depending on how much bandwidth they have been allocated)  of all revenue generated, thus it would not be able to help the subscriber to pay for Pizza by deducting her pre-paid balance. Therefore, the Telco's path to monetization is to broker a reservation and charge for the service.

Since Google Checkout is not launched in India, Google will not be competing with the Telco.