Your Smartphone is Spying on You

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Up late studying? Use your phone to find the nearest double espresso and maybe even pay for it. Location-based services make life easy, but what's the tradeoff? Software on phones across the U.S. is tracking user actions. Smartphone apps share user information with marketers to help their partners create targeted advertising. Still, that hasn't stopped the advance of location-based services, with smartphone owners most of all.

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Location-based apps can be especially useful for college -- they help students explore their campus and meet and make friends. LBS apps also build a marketplace where they can sell, buy or barter everything from bikes to tickets to tutoring.

But location-based apps aren't just for students -- administrators can use them to beef up campus tours, events for new students and alumni gatherings. These apps can help to encourage attendance, participation, school spirit and social networking. For example, at Webster University, which has its main campus located in Missouri, more than half of incoming students participated in a SCVNGR game during orientation. For colleges, location-based apps get high marks.


Background: Smartphone Adoption, Pew Internet, May 2012,

Checking in on University Check-ins, USA Today College, May 2011,

How Universities are Using Location-Based Apps, GeniusRecruiter, January 2012,

For a complete list of sources, please view the infographic.

Your Smartphone is Spying on You
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