AT&T Texting Users Location-Based Shopping Deals with ShopAlerts
The technology AT&T uses to determine a subscriber's location is called geo-fencing, developed by Placecast. Basically, a virtual "fence" is placed around locations of retailers who partner with AT&T. So, whenever a subscriber who has opted to receive ShopAlerts enters this designated area, he or she will receive a text message about a nearby special deal from companies like Hewlett-Packard, Kmart, JetBlue or S.C. Johnson. (Expect more companies to sign up if the program is successful.) The idea is that shoppers are more likely to buy, for example, a product if they're notified of a deal while they're one block away from a store, rather than while they're sitting on the couch in their underwear.