Google has rolled out a new version of Google Maps for Android which adds support for check-ins. Google Maps has had a Latitude service for almost 2 years, letting you see where your contacts are in real-time. But now you can also see where they’ve been, thanks to check-ins.

The check-ins will also let you add photos, captions, and other data. Because Google Latitude can already automatically track your location, you can set it to automatically check-you in at places you designate, and check out when you leave as well. You can also receive notifications asking if you want to check-in as you approach your favorite coffee shop.

Aside from any social karma you might get (or incur as the case may be), by sharing your travel and/or dining habits, Google Latitude supports the same kind of competitive check-ins you’ll find in services such as Foursquare and Gowalla. The more frequently you check-in to a location, the higher your rank will go, from Regular, to VIP, to Guru.

Google hasn’t said anything about coupons, but I wouldn’t be surprised to see companies start to offer discounts to customers who check-in regularly.

The check-in service is built into the latest version of Google Maps for Android, but it’s opt-in, which means if you’d rather not broadcast your location to the world, you don’t have to.

Brad Linder

Brad Linder is editor of Liliputing and Mobiputing. He's been tinkering with mobile tech for decades and writing about it since...