Google Latitude provides location-based social networking

I've always been a big fan of GPS and geo-coding. In fact, I've been teaching GPS seminars for our local boating education group, the Marblehead Sail & Power Squadron for years. So when early location-based social networks like Loopt and others started to appear, I immediately tested them, but found them to be quite useless in the end since few of my friends have the same early-adopter mentality, and quite a few - especially those in Europe - are more concerned about their privacy.

So I was delighted to hear that Google jumped into the location-based networking arena today with their new Google Latitude system. They have an application out for several mobile devices already, and the iPhone/iTouch version is promised to be released soon. You can also update your location from a regular web-browser.

This promises to be a very interesting service, and I hope that with the heft of Google behind it, location-based social networking will finally take off. If you decide to try it out, send me a friend request to alexander dot falk at gmail dot com.

There is also already a review from Katharine Boehret in The Mossberg Solution (Wall Street Journal) today.