Is Google cooking up an Android answer to Apple's iBeacon technology?

Google (NASDAQ: GOOG) is reportedly working on a new feature for its Android platform that mirrors many aspects of Apple's (NASDAQ: AAPL) location-aware iBeacon technology, according to an Android Police report. The report, without citing its sources, indicated that the new feature, called "Nearby," will let enabled devices know when they are near each other, and interact according to the context. Nearby could potentially use audio, Bluetooth and Wi-Fi technology to authenticate devices. However, the report added that to protect privacy, the information gathered from these various sources would be matched by Google and users would only be aware if they were in close proximity to a nearby device. Further, the report said, users will be able to choose who and what they are visible to. A Google spokesman did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Article

Meanwhile, according to a Business Insider report, Apple wants to use its iBeacon technology and other technologies to map the large indoor areas of stores, offices, event spaces and commercial buildings. The report cited Onyx Beacon CEO Roman Foec; Onyx markets beacons and provides management software for beacon owners, according to the report. Apple's iBeacon technology is an indoor location and proximity technology that uses Bluetooth low energy technology and has primarily been deployed so far in retail settings to determine when customers walk by the beacons. Article

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