Google Maps 5.1 for Android is out now, and it finally brings check-in services to Google Latitude.
No, it doesnâ€™t literally check you in to hotels and/or airports, silly. Thatâ€™s not due yet for another 2 years or so.
The check-in feature weâ€™re talking about here is the same one popularized by Foursquare and the like. Yes, now you can do it too with Google Latitude.
Google, however, has upped the ante here with a nifty set of features, including notifications, automatic check-ins, management of the places you frequently visit, and check out once you leave.
Hereâ€™s a short video highlighting the many useful things you can do with this new Google Latitude treat:
Sounds great, right? It is, but itâ€™s not perfect. Currently, you can’t earn badges (there is a check-in special status for frequently visited fav places: regular, VIP or Guru). MoreÂ importantly, it doesnâ€™t come with third party service support. In plain English? You canâ€™t share you Latitude check-in info with Twitter, Facebook, et al. You can only do so with other Latitude users. Boo!
iOS Latitude users, for their part, can get updated about where their Android Latitude buddies have checked-in, but since this new service is only available for Android users, they wonâ€™t be able to check-in to any place just yet.
So, on to the big question; is this a Foursquare-killer? In my opinion, no. Not at its present state with its limitedÂ availabilityÂ and lack of third party service support. But then again, Iâ€™m not a huge fan of these location-based social apps, nor am I an Android user. So letâ€™s hear from you Foursquare Android users out there, is Google Latitude with check in a better alternative to Foursqure or not?
You can read more about this over at the Official Google Blog.
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