There is an explosion of mobile apps fighting for attention at SXSW Interactive 2012 this weekend in Austin, TX. As I try to understand the playing field, I’m posting short profiles of each local, mobile, social app here on the blog.
First up is Glancee, a new way to meet new people nearby who share friends and interests with you. Glancee explore the profiles of people nearby and will notify you when somebody has common friends or mutual interests, then enables you text or call–potentially creating new, meaningful connections with new people.
Glancee works in the background saving memories of the people you encounter veered making it easy to discover the things you both enjoy and enables you to have have a private conversation about them.
If you are an event organizer, Glancee has a version enabling you to engage your audience by promoting conversations. It can increase the visibility of your staff and sponsors by connecting them with your crowd, and help you better understand your event with unique analytics.
Glancee reflects a new trend of ambient mobile apps, that quietly run in the background exploring your local surroundings, and discovering new social opportunities for you, with friends, and people around you who share similar interests.
I’m spending more time building, what I’ve dubbed the CityGrid Local, Mobile, Social Stack, a list of APIs, platforms and tools that you can use in your local-mobile applications. Today I’m diving into Verizon’s LocationKit API which provides a unified library across platforms and devices that can be used to request location information.
Despite what you may think, the Verizon LocationKit API is not specific to Verizon devices, and supports a wide variety of Android, iOS, Blackberry and Brew MP devices. The LocationKit API supports two types of location requests:
- Single Request – Usually requested to get local search information or to place the device on a map
- Tracking Request – Used to show the position of the device on the map in real time or to navigate to a destination
LocationKit supports three different methods to obtain location information:
- Standalone GPS (SGPS) uses the GPS chipset in devices that can obtain GPS information without network assistance
- Cell ID uses the location of the cell the device is currently talking to provide a quick approximate location that can be used to obtain local information
- Wi Fi ID uses the visible Wi-Fi networks that the device can see to obtain an approximate location that can be much more accurate than the Cell ID location
To obtain location information your application can request a single fix where the applications specifies how much time it is willing to give the hardware for obtaining the best possible location, or a multiple fix where your application requests a stream of fixes. When the desired request is submitted and a listener / callback is used to pass the information back to your host application.
The Verizon Mapkit API is a perfect addition to the CityGrid Local, Mobile, Social Stack. Location is essential in all local, mobile, social applications and the Verizon LocationKit is a robust, easy to use library you can use in your native app development, and in conjunction with the Verizon Mapkit API you can provide real-time location and rich mapping to your mobile application users.
Google quietly added check-ins to Google Latitude, taking on Foursquare in the local check-in game.
Currently Google Latitude users can check-in via their iPhone and Android apps, and view check-ins via their Google Latitude web app and dashboard.
I went through the Google Latitude API to see if an endpoint was added for check-ins, but currently you can only work with a users current location as well as location history.
So for now its just an application feature, but I’m sure its only a matter of time before recording check-ins and pulling a users historical check-ins will be available via the API.
Foursquare has dominated when it comes to local check-in, even remaining on top when challenged by Facebook check-ins.
I’m curious to see what the new Google Latitude feature will do to change Foursquare’s game?