Archives For latitude

Google Places with Hotpot
Leading up to 2010 everyone said it would be the year of location-based services. The blogs were all saying location, location, location as the next big thing and apps such as Foursquare, Gowalla, Yelp, Whrrl and TriOut were all trying to capitalized on the opportunity. While most location-based services are mobile applications for the iPhone and Android with the steady momentum in the location space what does it mean for the search, especially Google. For most part of the year Google Latitude, Google’s most popular location-based application was only available via a web application for the iPhone and as in opt-in feature on Android powered devices. But Google Latitude provides very little features outside of updating your location in real-time and/or “stalking” following your friends.

Then there were the failed acquisitions for Google. Earlier this year Yelp turned down a half billion dollars buy out and recently Groupon declined Google’s 6 billion dollar deal. Before trying to acquire Groupon Google promoted their vice president of search products, Marissa Mayer, to a new role focused on location and local services. Regardless of being turned down from both Yelp and Groupon and with Marissa in charge Google has a list of location-based related products for the enterprise, small business and location-based fanboys to choose from. Here’s the list of Google location related products.

Google Latitude

See where your friends are right now.
Google Latitude lets you stay close with your friends from your phone, computer, or both

Google Places

Local recommendations powered by you and your friends

Google HotPot

Rate places and get personalized recommendations.
hotpot+rating+app.jpg (964×667)

Google Maps

(for web and mobile devices)

Google Tags

Google Tags are yellow markers that allow business owners to promote important aspects of their businesses in Google Search results. Scroll over tags on Google or click on the sponsored link to view offers, photos, or other select features.

Google Boost Ads

Boost ads are eligible to appear in the “Sponsored Links” section of and Google Maps search result pages.

Google Goggles

Google Goggles lets you use pictures taken with your mobile phone to search the web. It’s ideal for things that aren’t easy to describe in words. There’s no need to type or speak your query – all you have to do is open the app, snap a picture, and wait for your search results.

Google NFC with mobile devices

(New) Search location filters
coffee raleigh - Google Search


Google +1

aka future social networking layer.

Google Ventures Investments:

SCVNGR and Miso

Google clearly has a plan to dominate the location-based industry in 2011 with all nine of their products and when Google +1 launches I’m sure location will be a key element linking all the data points. If not Google will probably make another attempt to acquire a location-based platform and this time not make the same mistake as when Google purchased Dodgeball in 2005.

Will Google dominate location in 2011 or will Google look to acquire another location-based service? How many Google location platforms do you use?

Yesterday afternoon I was on a geo / location-based twitter rant due to various market research reports and blog post about the value of location-based services and the adoption of them. I’m not saying the research was inaccurate but I think the main message that was being delivered to marketers about the current state of location-based services could have been delivered better. If you have no clue what I’m talking about read the following post:

Study: Foursquare, LBS Apps Have Narrow Audience, Prime For Early Adopter Marketers

Foursquare for Marketing: Location Based Apps Unknown by 84% Surveyed – Forrester

The Case for Early Adoption: Why Forrester is Wrong About Marketers and Location-Based Services

Forrester: Why Most Marketers Should Forgo Foursquare

@waynesutton Wow. Someone is on a location apps kick. Love it. What if I told you I’ve never used ’em. Convince me in 140 chars?Wed Jul 28 03:14:43 via Twitter for iPhone

Regardless after my little twitter rant, my good friend @djwaldow posted a tweet saying “What if I told you I’ve never used ’em. Convince me in 140 chars?”. So I went I posted two tweets, a little over 140 characters to convince him to join at least one location-based service. Here’s my response: 6 Reasons why you should check-in using location-based services:

1. Checking in is an additional relationship channel. Everyone loves social media/networks especially Facebook because it builds relationship and connects people right? By checking in your friends can easily see your frequent places and can join you and/or have the opportunity to perictipte in in

2. Location endorsement: When you check into a location and broadcast via twitter or facebook it’s like an endorsement saying I’m here and you recommend the location. What happens in terms of customer engagement/your experience can be easily shared making the location space another valuable social channel not only for businesses but for marketers as well.

3. Exploration when Traveling: Yelp is probably one of the best at finding new places and reading reviews from your social graph or the local community. Then I would say foursquare but if you’re in the Raleigh, Durham, Chapel Hill area use TriOut. Checking into locations while traveling is not only a great way to meet new friends but you can easily see the most popular recommended locations from the community.

4. Mobile social story telling: My friend @schneidermike calls this the “post check-in experience” (PCE). With location-based apps such TriOut, PegShot, Whrrl, Birghtkite & Gowalla you can add additional social content outside of a text based message like a tweet. By uploading pictures or videos after checking in your friends can see more of what you’re experiencing at a location.

5. Tracking/Stalking: If you’re comfortable with random people showing up just to say hello or joining you for coffee, feel free to check-in everywhere. Also depending on your family or work, you can check-in and use it as a way of confirming that you’re where you’re suppose to be.

6. Customer rewards: This by far is one of the most popular reasons many are joining location-base services and why not? You’re already visiting a location, why not check-in and be rewarded for it. It could be 5 to 10% off your purchase or a free drink or a coupon or cash with apps like @WeReward. But the problem right now is that many businesses have yet to offer a customer loyalty location promotions and the growing geek herds are getting impatient. Give the location-based space some time and you’ll have more customer loyalty check-in promotions that you can use.

Do you use TriOut, Foursquare, Brightkite, Whrrl, Gowalla, Scvngr, PlacePop or other location-based services to check-in? If so why or why not?

Do you think this is enough to convince @djwaldow to join a location-based service?

As many of you know there’s an unofficial no google apps allowed rule in the iTunes app store. Well, not really but we’re still waiting on the official Google Voice and Gmail native apps to be approved. In the mean time developer Alberto García Hierro has managed to have approved a Google Latitude app called “Latitudie” [iTunes link] .

Google Latitude lets you see your friends on a map on Google Maps for mobile and iGoogle. Use Latitude to plan an impromptu meetup, see that a loved one got home safely, or just stay in touch with friends.


So, how does Latitudie work? It does a few things; one it uses your iPhone 3G and up or iPad GPS to find your location, updates your Google Latitude location and it shows your location account. Latitudie also has a location history view where you can delete past locations. Sounds simple enough right? But wait there’s more, it also runs in the background. Sounds like automatic checking in to me.


Reading the reviews, some have said this app will drain your battery in 30 minutes or less because even if you’re not running iOS4 Latitudie will run in the background and update your location every minute causing massive battery drain. The developer has stated this is a bug in version 1.0 and will be fixed in version 1.1 as soo as Apple approves it or if Apple approves it. Here’s a note from the developer on the upcoming Latitudie 1.1 features:

Latitudie 1.1, adding the following features, has been sent to Apple for review and should be available soon:

– Added support for location updates in the background using high precision
– Added support for periodically updating your location when running on the background, even if you haven’t moved
– Added support for temporarily hiding your location
– Fixed a bug which updated your location too fast

But wait.. should have Apple have approved this app from the start, being that it’s Google Latitude and it doesn’t work like it should have?

Regardless if you’re looking for a Google Latitude app for the iPhone or iPad Latitudie is available. Something Android users have installed by default.

Do you use Google Latitude? If so how? Do you have Latitudie installed?