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App Friday: Glympse

Glympse iconThere’s an ever increasing push towards your apps’ desire to make use of your location, whether it’s to ground a tweet in the real world or embed the location of your latest Instagram masterpiece, but leaving location services on from your device doesn’t only drain battery, but as a matter of personal privacy, sometimes you just don’t want everyone knowing where you are.

Glympse takes a different approach to location sharing, with the focus on short bursts of real-time feedback rather than a permanently embedded location, public to all. The concept makes use of your smartphone’s GPS to determine your location, you can then choose to send this to a phone or email contact and they’re then able to view your whereabouts for as long as you choose.

Glympse screenshot

Once you’ve downloaded the application, you’ll be prompted to activate your GPS services, which only remain active during the tracking process. Once the app has detected where you are, you can set waypoints or destinations by searching your local area or selecting a location on the map. Once Glympse knows your location, you can then choose from a list of options to send and share this information.

Select a contact, add a personal message, including predefined instances and even an estimated time of arrival. What’s more Glympse doesn’t require the recipient to run the app. So long as they have internet access, the web link that they receive features an embedded Google map with all of the information you defined, including a timer showing how long you’ve chosen to share your location with them.

Glympse desktop interface

Once a ‘glympse’ expires, it remains in the app’s history so you can use it again. The notion of being able to selectively share your real-time location helps tackle the question “where are you?”, or at least, that’s how its’ developers perceive it. Test Glympse out for yourself, it’s free and available on Android, iOS, Windows Phone, BlackBerry OS and even Windows Mobile (here).


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