Minggu, 08 Maret 2009

Track Your Mates With Google Tool

The latest innovation by Google could let users track the whereabouts of friends, children or even straying spouses.

The Latitude service has been added to Google Maps on some types of mobile phones and BlackBerrys.

Users appear as a small dot on a map, allowing friends to instantly find out where they are.

"Now you can do things like see if your spouse is stuck in traffic on the way home from work, notice that a buddy is in town for the weekend, or take comfort in knowing that a loved one's flight landed safely, despite bad weather," Google said in a blog post.

Handsets with GPS are extremely accurate, showing where the user is to within a couple of metres.

Without GPS, it could be metres - or even kilometres - wrong, depending on the nearest mobile phone mast.

Dismissing fears of Big Brother-style surveillance, Google said each individual chooses to be tracked by the system - and controls who can see it.

They can even lie by manually changing the location.

"For instance, let's say you are in Rome. Instead of having your approximate location detected and shared automatically, you can manually set your location for elsewhere - perhaps a visit to Niagara Falls," Google's blog added.

The search company insist they will not save information on where users have been.

"We store only the most recent automatic update or location you manually enter," a spokeswoman said.

The Google Maps add-on has been launched just weeks after Google axed its Dodgeball service, which used text alerts.

Latitude is available in 27 countries on Android, BlackBerry, Windows Mobile and Symbian 60, as well as PCs.

Similar geosocial networking services are already provided by smaller companies, such as Loopt and BrightKite.


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