Qualcomm’s Xiam Tells You Where It’s At

xiam-qualcomm-logo-150Updated: On Monday, Qualcomm (s qcom) announced a location-based recommendation engine powered by Xiam, which it acquired last March. The service (offered through carriers) takes demographic information, a user’s personal preferences and geographic location, and serves up lists of places and events that the user might enjoy. For example, if I’m visiting San Francisco, my Xiam-equipped carrier could use my location to show me Indian restaurants (a favorite of mine) near my hotel from Yelp, or concerts I might like to hit based on my ringtones. Xiam combines my preferences and data consumption to build the recommendations. It also can be used to offer ads.

It works with any GPS chip and has open APIs, which means location providers such as Skyhook and local information services such as Yelp can work with the platform. Update: However, today’s launch of Google’s (s Goog) Latitude mobile social mapping service could end up competing with Xiam and its carrier customers by offering ads based on location as well. Still, this is Qualcomm’s effort to join companies like Apple (s aapl), which pioneered touch, and Nuance ( s nuan), which has pushed speech recognition, in improving the way we navigate mobile phones. Read More about Qualcomm’s Xiam Tells You Where It’s At

Raconteurs Go Old To Gold, Secret Girlfriend: NTV Station Today

Today Boing Boing debuted this viral campaign pushing the Raconteurs’ new… well, I’m not sure what Jack White and his fellow rockers are promoting with this. But it’s a fun little Antique Roadshow parody that, in classic Web 2.0 form, solicits YouTubers to create their own magic devices. (An extended cut is available here.)

And Steve Bryant reviews the Atomic Wedgie series Secret Girlfriend: “big-boobed, PG-13 soft core that’s slightly evocative of lonelygirl15 in its just-off-screen promise of titillation.” Is that a good thing or a bad thing? Find out at NewTeeVee Station!

Would You Fire Your ISP Over Privacy?

OK, so it’s no secret that a desire for free services on the part of consumers coupled with the desire of service providers to make a buck has spawned ever more intrusive ad models (Hello, Beacon!) But while hyper-targeted ads and behavioral advertising raise eyebrows, so far they’ve largely failed to raise consumers’ ire. Target that data from deep within an ISP, however, and people start to get worried.

It’s already led to problems in the UK. Privacy rights organizations have recently started to express concerns over the use of a service by ISPs such as BT and Virgin Media from a startup called Phorm. The company places its servers inside a telco’s network to check out the data moving through the ISP’s pipes. Phorm assures users that their data remains anonymous, and that they can choose to opt out of the program, but so far, people aren’t impressed.

Phorm is also hoping to expand into the U.S. It already has competition, from NebuAd, which is putting its deep-packet-inspection equipment inside ISPs to serve targeted ads. The company got some unwanted attention last June after Redmoon, a Texas ISP, started using the service to deliver ads on top of existing sites. If your ISP started monitoring your data so it could serve up targeted ads, would you stay with them, or would you switch? Going mobile may not help. Remember that just last week, Qualcomm agreed to pay some $32 million mobile ad insertion company Xiam.