Home Micello: Google Maps for the Indoors

Micello: Google Maps for the Indoors

Looking for a new company to get excited about? Look no further than mobile mapping startup, Micello. Their new mapping solution is basically “Google Maps for the indoors.” What that means is that instead of focusing on streets and terrain, they’re mapping the insides of buildings like shopping malls, convention centers, theme parks, college campuses, and more. And because Micello is a mobile solution, you not only see what’s where, you can see where you are, too.

Announced today at the DEMOfall 09 conference, Micello is initially going to be offered as an iPhone application. It should become available in the iTunes App Store within the next couple of weeks.

To generate the maps, the small team of Micello users, which numbers only about a dozen employees, takes whatever maps of various businesses, colleges, and other large indoor locations are available and manually maps them out for use in the mobile application. The process of converting an online PDF, for example, to a mapped locale in Micello takes a couple of hours, explains Micello co-founder Anil Agarwal.

To start, Micello will provide maps for the San Francisco Bay area where they already have 150 indoor locations mapped. They will then proceed to map the rest of California and, following that, they’ll move onto other major metropolitan areas in the U.S. By the end of next year, they plan to have over 5000 places mapped across the country.

An interesting side note about Micello is how fast they’ve managed to create this new and incredibly useful resource. They revealed their alpha only months ago at the 2009 JavaOne conference held in June. At the time, the founders were simply looking for feedback as to whether people thought this would be an application worth pursuing. The response was overwhelmingly positive, leading the company to move forward with their plans to create what is Micello today.

In addition to navigating the maps, aided by the iPhone’s GPS to show you where you are, Micello users can also locate their Facebook, Twitter, and iPhone contacts within the map community and share their stories, feedback, and other notes about the places they visit. Users can submit error reports, too, if something isn’t accurate and the Micello team will make the correction.

Premium Offerings and Future Plans

Further down the road, premium features will be available to businesses and other organizations which will allow them to annotate their listings with additional information, whether that’s what speaker begins his presentation at the convention hall downtown or what Macy’s will have on sale today. The application may even tap into the “alerting” feature of mobile devices to pop-up optional alerts to customers informing them of a special event or sale.

Versions of Micello for Blackberry, Android, and WebOS platforms are only months away as is a Facebook application. For more information, stay tuned to micello.com for updates.

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