Cingular shuts down AT&T LBS

Effective Jan 1st 2006 the old AT&T LBS system, including ‘Find Things’ and ‘Find Things Nearby’, is going away.

“Cingular has maintained this service for our mMode customer base as long as feasible even as we were merging our networks,” said Cingular’s Kelleigh Scott. “But now that our active number of subscribers that use this service on a weekly basis has dwindled significantly, we have determined that this is the right time to cease our LBS services on mMode.”

It may never have worked well, but it was all they had. Cingular has some work to do to catch up with their mobile rivals on this front so perhaps we’ll see some autonomous GPS handsets from them.

Meanwhile, Cingular is testing out new payment systems using near field networks. Pretty cool. Would be nice to be able to walk out the door without a wallet and eliminate those trips to the ATM. And perhaps one day a network of location-aware near field base stations could help Cingular figure out LBS.

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