Thursday, July 11, 2013

Google's Bad Latitude Attitude

Google's announcement yesterday (I learned from the E-mail below) wasn't a shock for most familiar with the app, and keeps up a pattern of Google shutting down apps that don't fit nicely into it's plan for Google + world domination.

I liked Latitude, but the writing was on the wall for some time and I noticed that almost all of the ~ dozen or so of my contacts who were using the app have long-since stopped updating their positions. For me, it was a handy way of collecting history, sharing general location to most friends, and sometimes showing specific location to a few select users, at select times. The API was also useful for developers to extend location functionality into other realms,like Jeffrey Fridel's reverse geocoding functionality for Adobe Lightroom. (which worked mostly, sometimes....

And I hate check-ins: just one more useless "feature" IMHO. I didn't have to check-in w/ Latitude though to still have it be useful for me.

Alternatives? OpenPaths is an altruistic-sounding, privacy-concerned group, that I've tried out somewhat in the past. There are other apps that sound promising on the AppStore, like this one for geotaging photos on non-GPS'd cameras... For me the selling points will be privacy, battery management and functionality related to history. To be continued...


Earlier today, we announced that Google Latitude is no longer part of the Google Maps app, and we're retiring Latitude on August 9, 2013.
This means that after August 9, your Latitude friends list will be deleted and you'll lose the ability to share your location with them. There will also be some changes to Location Reporting and Location History, including changes to third-party applications that use Google Latitude. Please see our FAQs for more information.
We understand some of you still want to see your friends and family on a map, which is why we've added location sharing to Google+ for Android (coming soon to iOS).
Thank you for using Google Latitude.

The Google Latitude Team

© 2013 Google Inc. 1600 Amphitheatre Parkway, Mountain View, CA 94043

You have received this mandatory email service announcement to update you about important changes to the Google Latitude product.

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