SEOUL, April 11 (Korea Bizwire) – Following its new artificial intelligence-based search service, Naver, South Korea’s biggest web portal, is developing its own location-aware recommendation system called LARS, which will assist people with detailed information about locations that are commonly visited.
Researchers have been developing a new LARS system that analyzes the information gathered with the agreement of users to present related information to popular points of interest (POI) such as famous restaurants or historical sites.
For instance, when users walk around the neighborhood of Yeonnam in Mapo district, the LARS service will recommend places such as cafés that are open at the time, and show how busy they are.
Previously, users of the search engine had to go back and forth between blogs, videos and maps to gather useful information while walking around.
Apart from opening hours and reviews left by previous visitors, which are usual pieces of information expected by many, Naver’s new LARS service will have additional knowledge about the atmosphere of a place, how busy it currently is and how many parking spaces are available.
The introduction of location-aware technology, which Naver seems poised to be the first to deliver in South Korea, is expected to shorten the amount of time wasted searching for small little details including the number of tables and the location of bathrooms at shops and restaurants.
Apart from the new location-aware service currently in development, Naver’s efforts to revamp its web portal will see new features regarding spatial information added to its map service.
However, the date on which the service will be launched has yet to be revealed.
Officials at an annual colloquium held last Friday avoided directly mentioning much of the reported LARS-based service in development, with the main focus on the company’s AI-based search service.
Last month, Naver displayed a self-driving car model and a robot called M1 at the Seoul Motor Show 2017, hinting at its interest in pursuing research and development in the field of location-awareness technology.
M1, a robot that stands the height of a child, was designed with a laser sensor and a 360-degree camera to move around shopping malls and concert venues to collect information that will help develop indoor maps for public places.
With new 3D maps, users will be able know large public places like shopping malls literally like the palm of their hand.
One researcher at Naver said, “With the help of M1, the new map service will allow users to trace their location with the precision of a GPS system just by taking a picture of the wall in a shopping mall.”
Having launched a series of advanced technology-based services including an AI-based search service, Naver is solidifying its position as one of the leading companies in the web industry.
Ashley Song (firstname.lastname@example.org)