Ronny Lam

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Google Is Sunsetting Latitude

Today the news came that Google Latitude will retire:

Google Latitude will be retired on August 9th, 2013. Products being retired include Google Latitude in Google Maps for Android, Latitude for iPhone, the Latitude API, the public badge, the iGoogle Gadget, and the Latitude website.

At first I was in shock, another Google product I use being closed. But that was followed by relief. Let me explain why. It turns out that I am not a Latitude user in the sense that I want to share my location with friends. The only thing I do is update my location regularly to make it easy for me to fill out my travel expense report at the end of the month. That feature is going to stay and will still be available via http://google.com/locationhistory. It’s just that I have to leave another app running in the background instead of the Latitude app. The Google app with Google Now included keeps updating your location to have Google Now cards ready. These locations will still be visible in http://google.com/locationhistory, I have tested that.

Once in awhile I had the need to update my location manually, because I was traveling without a Google app, or my mobile data was dead or something else. In that case I had a little Perl tool to update my history through the Latitude API, but it seems that that one will also be closed.

Anyway, after a shock, my workflow will not be changed as I can still use Google to fill in my travel expenses. The only question I have now is which Google service will go down next? I bet it’s going to be Feedburner.