April 16, 2010 – Nokia has acquired MetaCarta, a Cambridge, Mass.-based company that specializes in geographic information. The details of the acquisition have not been made public.
MetaCarta’s technology joins geographic search and geographic tagging capabilities to allow users to find information about any location. Its products are grouped into four categories, which include the Metacarta Platform, Geoweb Applications, Hosted Content Collections and Geographic Data Modules.
Some examples of its technology include its NewsMap product, which allows publishers to create a mashup of their content with geographic context, and its Geosearch News site, which plots many new stories on a map.
Most likely, MetaCarta’s technology will be integrated into Nokia-owned Navteq, a geographic information system (GIS) company that focuses on electronic maps, and it may also find some use in the map portion of Nokia’s Ovi web service.
With the increased focus of location-based with services like Yelp and Where – having access to a company that can make news and other content location-aware will certainly come in handy for Nokia.
Nokia has been in a buying mood recently, having also recently purchased the mobile web browser company Novarra.
Metacarta currently has over 30 employees, and has received funding from In-Q-Tel (the investment arm of the CIA), Chevron Technology Ventures, Sevin Rosen Funds, Solstice Capital and Chisholm Private Capital.