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Do you hear what I hear? Using acoustic probing to detect smartphone locations

: Diaconita, I.; Reinhardt, A.; Englert, F.; Christin, D.; Steinmetz, R.


Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers -IEEE-:
IEEE International Conference on Pervasive Computing and Communication workshops, PerCom Workshops 2014 : Budapest, Hungary, 24 - 28 March 2014
Piscataway, NJ: IEEE, 2014
ISBN: 978-1-4799-2737-1
ISBN: 978-1-4799-2736-4
International Conference on Pervasive Computing and Communication (PerCom) <12, 2014, Budapest>
Symposium on Activity and Context Modeling and Recognition (ACoMoRe) <1, 2014, Budapest>
Fraunhofer FKIE

Many context-aware smartphone applications depend on specific conditions for gathering data, e.g., specific phone locations or orientations. As a result, the significant overhead of keeping all this information in mind is imposed on their users. Besides averting the interest of potential application users, these requirements defeat one of the main purposes of these mobile data collection, namely simplifying life through mobile sensing applications. This is not a problem that solely affects the users, but the developers of the applications alike. As even the most diligent users often do not manage to follow the strict data collection guidelines at all times, errors in the collected data may ultimately lead to the provision of wrong services and thus to degraded application quality. In this paper, we thus present a solution to determine the location of a phone in order to support context-aware applications. It offers the possibility to detect the position of the phone with an accuracy of 97 %, as well as being able to correlate it with the type of the location of the user. Our system can be used to improve existing mobile sensing applications by facilitating various services that depend on the phone location, e.g., seamlessly adapting the ringtone volume or setting a phone's flight mode.