Magazine article Information Today

Bump Technologies Lets Phones Go Bump in the Night

Magazine article Information Today

Bump Technologies Lets Phones Go Bump in the Night

Article excerpt

Since many of our phones can already talk to our computers and our cars, why is it so hard to get them to talk to one another? With most mobile services, sharing info with someone right next to you is just as difficult as sharing it with someone on the other side of the country. But thanks to a startup called Bump Technologies, Inc. (http://bu.mp), that's beginning to change.

The company's technology lets users literally bump their phones together to exchange all sorts of information instantly. "The problem we're trying to solve is making it easier for devices to connect," says Bump co-founder Jake Mintz. "The big problem we saw is that our phones are becoming incredibly smart, and a big part of our lives. My iPhone has photos, a calendar, e-mail ... [but] I put two of these incredibly smart phones together on a table and it's really difficult, almost impossible, to connect."

Bump's system works by detecting the physical impact between two phones, then analyzing a multitude of information to determine which two users just bumped. On top of basic information such as time and location, Bump's servers analyze data such as network location and even physics data from the phones' accelerometers to identify the proper pairing of users. Once the two users are identified, information can be easily transferred from one phone to the other. For security reasons, both users must also confirm the connection.

After developing the technology, Bump turned its system into an open application programming interface (API) that other services can use to drive all sorts of connections. …

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