Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Google knows where you are.

With the positioning service Google Latitude manifests the end of privacy. By cellphone tracking can be seen in Google Maps to display where friends and relatives right now. In principle, this could be fun - if only someone would join it.


Google heralds the end of all excuses On. Sayings like "I'm standing in a traffic jam," "am already on, just go to mom," you can now save on your mobile. At least if you use Google Latitude. The expansion of the online map service Google Maps showing family and friends anytime, where you're staying. This works of course in the opposite direction by the location of the delights in the Google Maps display.

Whether you really want is another question.

To use the new service you need not just a Google Account, you must also have the right mobile phone. From Google's perspective would be the fact the T-Mobile G1, the so-called Google phone. Ironically, the Latitude software for the G1, but is not ready.

Even Apple's iPhone is already on the list, but also still waiting on the software adaptation. Nevertheless, the localization system according to Google, however, on most Symbian S60 devices, so Nokia's smartphones, on many BlackBerrys, and most mobile phones with Windows Mobile 5.0 or higher.

They are found

The application is simple: From the Google Directory, select the contacts whose locations you would like to know. By e-mail the chosen ones then post, must first give their consent before Google is trying to make their site to find.

The actual location is then according to the motto "we take what we get." If the searched around a GPS mobile phone, the satellite tracking certain position. If not, Google calculates the approximate position of the mobile phone via the mobile network.

However, PC users are not excluded. Who around the office on a standard PC is sitting, his whereabouts can also manually enter in Latitude. With Google's Chrome browser is that, as Google, also can be completed automatically. The midday performance in the canteen then logically remains unnoticed.

Motion without movement Profiles

But anyway the system displays only the approximate position of its user. A meter precise positioning, using GPS as they would theoretically be possible, the company promises not.

Above all, however, leaves it to the respective users to determine how closely one's position to communicate. For each location scouts can be adjusted, whether his current position, the only city in which it resides, or no position data may be communicated. That is at least a degree of anonymity and one can, for example, the pre-Christmas shopping before the family hide. Who knows everything on the other hand, in principle, is the service provider in the middle - Google.

After all, Google promises that the position data is not saved. A motion profile can be derived from the Latitude data do not create - at least not automatically. Who sets the value, you can of course also just a regular decent data retrieve a specified item, and then manually save it to a profile together. Good also conceivable that for this task is a software program.

"If you do nothing on!"

But by such paranoid ideas will not know about Google. Fun is the new tool do not create fear. Therefore, you can also simply the symbol of a friend on the digital map Click on him or her via SMS, email or chat to contact us. So should arrange spontaneous meetings, or just tips on what you just enterprise could be replaced. And because the whole thing within Google Maps is running, you may wish to also get directions for a meeting on the cell phone can beam.

In essence, Google has thus the promise of the so-called location-based services, the location service, a good bit more redeemed. It remains only the question of whether you actually want.

Those who are already on the Internet under the slogan "I have nothing to hide" digitally exposes will love Latitude. A test well in a dozen Google users send their request to release location data remained completely unsuccessful. Exemplary should notify one of the answer be: "If you do nothing to."

Since Google still has some convincing to be done.

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