Hung Truong: The Blog!

Automatic Checkins in Google Latitude

February 01, 2011 | 0 Minute Read

It looks like Google has updated their Latitude app with checkins, including automatic notifications and checkins (and checkouts).

When I developed Checkmate, there wasn’t really a standard design for the auto-checkin behavior. Some users have mentioned that the app might work better by sending notification to check in, more like reminders. I’ve leaned towards fully automated checkins, myself.

Google seems to be taking a hybrid approach, which is pretty interesting. You get a notification the first time you arrive somewhere (probably only for places you’ve checked into before), and then an option to automatically check in after that.

I might end up building some kind of hybrid (or a simple option in settings) system in Checkmate to see if that works better in general. I wonder how Google is mitigating the cost of GPS usage in its Latitude app. I always figured that the thing keeping auto-checkin out of official apps is the fact that they run the battery down pretty hard.