For those of you that are new to the concept, a quick explanation. Most phones come equipped with GPS functionality these days. And otherwise with a slightly more approximative location-derivation system. In a nutshell, your smart phone is probably able to deduce its location.
This is not only useful for centering Google Maps, but it also opens a whole range of new, revolutionary gps tracker services. Sometimes geo-tagging is added as a surplus feature (e.g. Twitter geo-tags), but far more interesting are applications like Foursquare and Brightkite which are, in its simplest explanation, location-based networking applications. They allow you to find your friends when they are near, or let people know you’re still held up at work.
There’s only one problem. There are too many alternatives. Sure, each has its advantages, but it proves severely disadvantageous to have your contacts spread out over a large number of networks, and to triple post your own location every time. That’s where Check.in takes the stage.
Check.in Combines The Most Popular Geo-Based Services
Check.in is a new Android, iPhone and iPad application, developed by the guys at BrightKite. More specifically, it’s a web-tool that works on each of the said devices. Developed with HTML5 it offers a number of technical advantages. Light and universally accessible, but first and foremost, you don’t even need to download and install it. Just point your web browser to m.check.in and start using it. Account creation and application usage is further explained in the next paragraph.
The application has support for the most popular geo-based gps tracker applications. More specifically, Brightkite, Foursquare, Gowalla, whrrl and TriOut. In one go, you can check into all these services at once, instead of having to do it five times. It also allows you to publish your location updates on Facebook and Twitter on a service-by-service basis. This means, for example, that you can allow Gowalla specifically to post its updates to Facebook as well.
Signing Up For A Check.in Account
As specified before, the application doesn’t require any download or installation on your mobile device, and it’s entirely free to use. Setting it up is fairly easy as well. To start, go to m.check.in and press the Register button.
There, you need to pick a login name and password. You can pick any name you want, but pairing it with a valid email address will allow you to recover your password in the future as well. Since that’ll be the only use of your email, it doesn’t require verification, and you can start using Check.in right away.
Once logged in, you can start adding your accounts. For each, you’ll need to supply login data, and specify if you want the application to share updates on Twitter and Facebook. It’s probably advised not to do this for every single application.
That’s it. Check.in can now help you to find nearby locations, and post status updates to each of the services at once. You’ll also still be receiving your Mayorships and Points that you’d gain from normal usage!
Do you have any other tips for users with multiple geo-tagging accounts? Let us hear your thoughts on the issue in the comments section below!
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