Latitude on iPhone launched – Verdict?… meh
I’ve tried to check the Latitude site daily to see if it’s available and this morning it popped up.
To be honest, I’m really not very impressed.
I did sign up for release notifications from Google to be notified when Google Latitude was available for my device. I didn’t get any.
Latitude on the iPhone is basically a browser based site shows you where your friends are if they’re on your list and if they’ve updated their location.
Sadly it’s really nothing new. Because it’s Google I was hoping for something semi-groundbreaking. Instead we got a lesser version of BrightKite, on a map.
I guess that after all the waiting I was really hoping for more. Maybe something that had the option of running in the background so we get live ‘friends’ data. Maybe a slick, zippy app. Maybe something with more networking functionality.
Sadly, after looking around the web a little today I’m finding that I’m not the only person suffering from Latitude dismay.
Why is Latitude on the iPhone sucking? well, according to a number of sources Apple put the kibosh on an actual app. quite why, no-one knows.
In its announcement today, Google said it was Apple that wanted Latitude to be developed as a web application. And Google admitted to the limitations that face Latitude in such a format:
“Unfortunately, since there is no mechanism for applications to run in the background on iPhone (which applies to browser-based web apps as well), we’re not able to provide continuous background location updates in the same way that we can for Latitude users on Android, Blackberry, Symbian and Window Mobile.”
Wait! Apple will retard the development of apps by Google but not by Brightkite and the like?
It would seem that Apple is looking out for it’s own territory and agenda (I hope they have one).
What do you think?
- Would it have made sense to have a separate app?
- How about including it in the Google Maps app?
- Does Apple have the right to limit the functionality developers provide to their customers?