Get ready for every mobile app to have some sort of location-based check-in type feature, or other geographic-based features.
Two mobile location companies are releasing tools for developers to easily add location features to their applications. (This is reminiscent of a few years ago, when companies were offering plug-in “social” features to developers.)
Skyhook Wireless, which runs a wi-fi-based, GPS-like network, is releasing a software kit called Local Faves. It will allow developers to easily add location based functions into their iPhone applications.
SimpleGeo, a location infrastructure startup, similarly announced tools for developers earlier this week.
Both companies will help any app — regardless of its relevance to location — allow users to “check in,” and if they want, blast their location to the world. (Want to learn more about “checking in” and Foursquare? Click here for our tour.)
Why give software like this away? Both companies are hoping that location-based services will catch on with consumers so their paid services are worth more. In Skyhook’s case, it wants developers and gadget companies (Apple is already a customer) to embed its wi-fi-based location service into their devices. In Simple Geo’s case, it wants to sell geographic data services to developers.
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