Yesterday, I got a message from a friend asking me to sign up for Google Latitude - a significant upgrade in the company's Google Maps service that is also live in India. Google Maps uses a combination of GPS and GPRS to offer city specific maps and directions; I've not used it often because it hasn't been very useful when navigating small lanes in Delhi. Should you need to locate me, I'm at nixxin [at] gmail [dot] com. How Latitude Builds On Google Maps & What It Lacks: Latitude builds on the basic maps and directions feature of Google Maps by adding a social element to it: I can add my GPRS addicted friends, and find out where they are at this point in time. Latitude shares their phone number and allows me to call them, send an SMS, and should we decide to meet - it can send me directions from my location to theirs. There is a tab for information on public transportation options, as well as walking distance. This feature turns a navigational service with need-based-usage into a social network, encouraging repeat usage. This will certainly be useful for Mixers, Tweetups and Bloggers meets. Only, it isn't: Google Maps lacks adequate traffic information, accurate data and directions. I tried to search for directions that would lead me to a few people who have signed up for the service, and I couldn't get any inputs. In the past, I've had issues trying to navigate to a particular location -…
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