Google Goes Native With Latitude App - InformationWeek
Cloud // Cloud Storage
03:53 PM
Connect Directly
Building Security for the IoT
Nov 09, 2017
In this webcast, experts discuss the most effective approaches to securing Internet-enabled system ...Read More>>

Google Goes Native With Latitude App

The Latitude app for the iPhone allows continuous location updating, so you always know where your friends are.

Google Chrome OS Promises Computing Without Pain
(click image for larger view)
Slideshow: Google Chrome OS Promises Computing Without Pain

Despite its zealous promotion of the Web and HTML5, Google still sees value in native mobile apps, which offer capabilities that aren't yet available or well-implemented in mobile browsers.

On Monday, Google released a native iPhone app for Google Latitude, its social friend-tracking service. Latitude for the iPhone allows users to continuously share location information with friends.

Keeping tabs on friends this way, however, has a downside: Google has warned that continuous location sharing transmits a lot of data, which could affect those with limited data plans.

Also, any kind of continuous data transmission taxes the phone's battery more than periodic or on-demand transmission. This was one of the reasons that prior to iOS 4 Apple disallowed background processes in third-party apps.

Google offers Latitude as a feature of Google Maps on Android, BlackBerry, Symbian, and Windows Mobile phones. The company previously released a Latitude Web app for the iPhone and desktop computer users.

The new native iPhone app represents an attempt to make use of the latest iOS capabilities. "Though we released Latitude as a Web application before the iPhone supported third party background applications, today’s Latitude app was built from the ground up using iOS 4’s new multitasking capability to support background updating," explained Google engineer Chris Lambert in a blog post.

Apple released iOS 4 in June and iOS 4.2 in November.

When Latitude was initially released last year, at least one privacy group expressed concern that the system could be misused if installed and activated surreptitiously. Such speculation now appears rather overwrought. Currently, some 9 million people are actively using the service, according to Google.

Lambert observes that Latitude is 100% opt-in and that users have the option of sharing the city they're in rather than more specific coordinates.

The Latitude app will be available in over 15 languages and 45 countries though various iTunes App Stores over the next few days.

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
How Enterprises Are Attacking the IT Security Enterprise
How Enterprises Are Attacking the IT Security Enterprise
To learn more about what organizations are doing to tackle attacks and threats we surveyed a group of 300 IT and infosec professionals to find out what their biggest IT security challenges are and what they're doing to defend against today's threats. Download the report to see what they're saying.
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
White Papers
Current Issue
2017 State of IT Report
In today's technology-driven world, "innovation" has become a basic expectation. IT leaders are tasked with making technical magic, improving customer experience, and boosting the bottom line -- yet often without any increase to the IT budget. How are organizations striking the balance between new initiatives and cost control? Download our report to learn about the biggest challenges and how savvy IT executives are overcoming them.
Twitter Feed
Sponsored Live Streaming Video
Everything You've Been Told About Mobility Is Wrong
Attend this video symposium with Sean Wisdom, Global Director of Mobility Solutions, and learn about how you can harness powerful new products to mobilize your business potential.
Flash Poll