Nokia Sensor – First Thoughts

Nokia have released a new product called Sensor.

It’s a social networking tool that scans the local area via Bluetooth and reports back on other users in the area with Sensor enabled on their phones.

It’s very similar to Mobiluck in the way it works, but seems to have taken the concept to the next stage.

I had a similar idea a while back, and even got as far as coding the Bluetooth detection in Java. My idea was to tie into a FOAF file so you could look for friends or see who knew who in the area. The stumbling point was the difficulty in parsing RDF in J2ME. Ideally the parsing would have to be done on a seperate server somewhere, but like I said, it was just an idea that never got taken further.

When you load up Sensor you have a basic menu of options.

Nokia Sensor Menu

I’ve added a simple profile that can be exchanged with other Sensor users. Here I’ve taken a photo of Larry the Perl camel to use as the photo other Sensor users see when they check my profile out.

Nokia Sensor profile

When you have a profile, you can look for other Sensor users.

Nokia Sensor scanning

Of course, there aren’t any other Sensor users here at present so I can’t see what happens when there is someone else in the area.

It’ll be interesting to see the Bluetooth messages passed and if some bright spark will code up a desktop version. It defeats the object of course, but it’s still interesting to know how it works exactly.

It’s great to see Nokia supporting their handsets with great pieces of software like this and of course Lifeblog. Shame it’s just for Series 60 smart phones at present as this is the sort of thing that I can see the kids loving, and unfortunately not all of them can afford the best handsets.

I wonder when the first Sensor wedding will be… 🙂