With What3words, everyone and everywhere now has an address.
Do you know where you are right now?
If you do, could you give me the location? If you can, then you and I are in the minority.
Around 75% of people on earth have no address, that’s around 4 billion people by the way and this also includes not only the place they call home but also all the places that they may go to for school, work or to visit family or friends. So, if you’re not from a specific place that can be identified by a post code, how do you inform others where you are and if you’re travelling somewhere unfamiliar, how do you get to the right place?
Welcome to what3words – a start-up company that has mapped the entire world into 3m x 3m grids and developed an App that uses three short key words as the identifier for location.
That’s the address for King’s College on Strand in London which any cabbie in that city can find and any Google map can lead you to from a nearby tube station if you punch WC2R 2LS into your Google maps. But then, a postcode is a luxury that few countries have and who can ever remember Latitude: 51° 30′ 25.79″ N Longitude: 0° 06′ 34.80″ E, to get to the same place?
front.dinner.incomes. Much more effective, no?
Oh, but you can’t get online where you are? No problem, the algorithm of the App will reside inside a smartphone and uses a GPS connection to work – so even if you’re in the middle of the Pyrenees and can’t get any signal bars, you can still find where you are and where you want to go.
I thought I’d just check in to the Banyan Tree hotel in Bangkok where the rooftop bar is one of the finest in the world.
I just fancied a swim at Haleiwa Bay on the North Shore of O’ahu, Hawaii.
Having a beer in the middle of a local market in Almaty, Kazakhstan.
I’m guessing you can see how useful this app is now?
This same convenience for understanding your location and where others can find you or meet you means that Seventy-five Meters West of the General Cemetery, San Jose, Costa Rica, doesn’t have to be so confusing to anyone else but the people of that address. Language doesn’t have to be a barrier either as the system currently works in 9 nine languages with more following.
The what3words App has over 57 trillion 3m x 3m locations that cover the globe and the team behind this smart solution probably have the smartest thing to say about why this is important.
“Poor addressing might seem no more than annoying in some countries, but around the world it hampers the growth and development of nations, ultimately costing lives. We want to give everyone in the world the ability to talk about a precise location as easily as possible.”
Everyone and everywhere now has an address.