Google Latitude for the iPhone shows your current latitude / longitude

 

Google Latitude for the iPhone has finally been released!  The Google Latitude app shows your current latitude / longitude on a map along with anyone else in your address book who chooses to share their location with you.

Programmers the net over are scrambling for the Google Latitude API for a chance to integrate with the newly released app for iPhone.  The various types of software that Google Latitude can be integrated with is a multi-billion dollar industry as well as a key selling point.  Consumers and Google fans alike are also quite happy about the long awaited release.  Although Google Latitude has been out for years now, Apple has only just approved the app.  You can download Google Latitude from iTunes Store here.

It took Apple two full years to approve Google’s Latitude app which Google feels was two years too long.  Google Latitude allows a user to share his or her physical location with friends, family, and co-workers on a map.  “You can see where your friends are and now, continuously share where you are … even in the background once you’ve closed the app,” said Chris Lambert, a software engineer on the Latitude team, in a post on a Google blog.

Google has had many problems with Apple approving their apps and waited nearly 17 months for Apple to approve their Google Voice app for iPhone.  Google Latitiude was released in February 2009 and the Android integrated it fairly quickly as a Beta.  Now that Google Latitude is out for iPhone you can expect a lot more of your friends and family utilizing the app which means more cute little icons will be popping up on your yellow, white, and gray Google Maps as you drive around town.

The implications of your friends and family always knowing where you are can be good or bad- a double edged sword essentially.  Although I don’t like to lie and am usually brutally honest, sometimes it’s better to lie than to hurt someone’s feelings.  If no one ever lied the world would not necessarily be a better place and you can bet that people are going to be catching their friends and family in all kinds of awkward situations by tracking their every move.  I for one, am someone who loves new technology and usually embraces it with open arms; I don’t know if Google Latitude will make the cut for me though, due to all the privacy issues that arise.  The iPhone and all new smartphones already have the ability to track your location at all times.  This is how your GPS app or Google Maps finds your current location, that does not bother me.  What does bother me is that we will be sharing our location with others on the internet.  This opens the possibility that a friend’s account could be compromised and someone we don’t want tracking us could be doing so without our knowledge.

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What do you think about Google Latitude?
Will you ever disable your LOCATION so that you cannot be tracked?
Do you think knowing where everyone is at all times is a good or bad thing?

ORIGINALLY POSTED 14 DECEMBER 2010

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About Jonathan G. Nelson

Jonathan G. Nelson is the editor-in-chief and owner of NERD TREK. He is also owner/publisher at AAW Games / AdventureAWeek.com, a tabletop gaming company based in Snoqualmie, WA. Connect with Jonathan via Facebook.