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the friend tracking feature seems similar to Glympse, which I've used a lot:


sharing your location for a set time is really useful

I guess with all the toddlers supposedly owning iPods/iPhones/iPads, this has some valid use cases. But actively supporting personal surveillance systems seems like a weird move to me after the media hubbub about the location cache.

Yes, this is something people legitimately want. There are lots of occasions where I will go somewhere with friends/spouse and want to wander but occasionally sync up or know where someone else is. It sure beats SMSing "where R U" messages back and forth.

I guess I edited my posting while your were answering, sorry about that.

I clarified that I am actually more worried about the public reaction to this rather than legitimate use cases. Not really worried, just, why not leave it at a third party app?

To answer my own question, Apple's solution has probably both more polish and more lock-in power, just as with iMessage vs WhatsApp & Co.

The killer feature Glympse appears to have in comparison with iOS 5: it's cross platform. Not everyone you're going to want to sync with will have an iPhone or iPad.

"The MBA, which has fundamentally changed the way people think about computers"...

Err, no, I really don't believe it has.

I've got an app that does real time location sharing: http://convoyapp.net/ aimed at people driving in groups. I wonder how well this location sharing feature will compete against it, and if it makes it obsolete?

Damn, I have never heard of glympse. I actually made my own app for this six months ago: http://l.oc8.me . Glad I'm not going to spend time creating native versions, and can move on to my next pet project. :)

I actually like your implementation better. It's like a minimap from an RPG that shows the location of party members.

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