About

what3words is the simplest way to talk about any precise location. Our system has divided the world into a grid of 3m x 3m squares and assigned each one a unique address made of just 3 words. Now everyone and everywhere has a reliable address.

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Street addresses worldwide are inaccurate, unreliable and don’t exist at all in many places. Poor addressing is expensive and frustrating, hampers economic growth and development, restricts social mobility and affects lives.

Inaccurate addressing limits businesses and frustrates customers

Street addresses can usually identify a building, but aren’t accurate enough to help a courier or taxi driver find the correct entrance. This results in delayed or failed deliveries, and numerous ‘where are you’ phone calls.


There’s no human-friendly way to give a location to a machine

As personal devices, autonomous vehicles and the IoT streamline the way we live, we have an increasing need to communicate very accurate location. Addresses are too broad to direct a drone or an autonomous car, whilst GPS coordinates are complicated and prone to input mistakes.

Billions of people worldwide have no reliable address at all

Without an address, people struggle to access health and education services, register land and vote. Many of these people live in rapidly expanding cities, or informal settlements.

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what3words is a global addressing system. It has divided the world in 3m x 3m squares, each with a unique address made from 3 words – a 3 word address. It provides an accurate yet incredibly simple way to communicate any location and means everyone and everywhere has a reliable address.

A precise address for every front door and park bench

With accurate location information, everything from e-commerce purchases, and fast-food deliveries to taxis and emergency services can find the exact place they need to be, faster and more efficiently.

A truly global addressing system

what3words gives every home and business an address, promoting equal access to services such as healthcare and education. A simple, universal format and multi-language compatibility make what3words the ideal solution for cross-border trade, fuelling social mobility and economic development.

The location solution of the future

A 3 word address enables people to easily input precise locations into car navigation systems, delivery drones and autonomous taxis, making it a truly futureproof solution. It is also the only addressing system optimised for speech recognition.

See how 3 word addresses are being used by our industry partners around the world:

Originally from the music industry, our CEO and co-founder Chris Sheldrick identified the need for a better addressing system, after bands and equipment kept getting lost.

Chris enlisted the help of two friends, Jack Waley-Cohen and Mohan Ganesalingam, to devise the core algorithm, build the first wordlist and create the app and website. The three co-founded what3words in 2013 and remain a driving force behind the company.

In under four years, what3words has grown to a team of over 40 people, with offices in London, Ulaanbaatar and Johannesburg. Our system is currently used by over 500 partners including Aramex, Mercedes-Benz and the UN.

We’re making the world a less frustrating, more efficient and safer place, 3 words at a time.

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what3words powers

Find out how to use what3words in your business: