By now we all know about the iPhone 4s and the talk it generated, both positive and negative. However alongside the iOS5 release that preceded th 4S, Apple also announced the launch of ‘Find My Friends’, an iOS 5 compatible app which could be downloaded from the Apple app store.
The app is designed to function in a similar fashion to location based networks like foursquare, but on a limited scale. Users can follow their friends/contacts and track where their device is. Similarly, users also have the ability to choose who they share their location with and a notification asks them if they want to share their location and activity with a certain contact or not. All the locations are tracked using GPS, thus the user has the flexibility to opt out from the service any time they want. simply by turning GPS off.
While this app is no doubt a very helpful and interactive way of keeping touch, and while ‘Find My Friends’ comes with the option to enable/disable location sharing with anyone the user wants, it may become a big nuisance at times.
In New York recently a man bought his wife an iPhone 4s, loaded it with the app and enabled location sharing without her knowledge. This led him to track her at a time when he suspected she’d lied about her location, and he found out she was cheating on him. To make it worse, the man even went on to share the entire story over a popular forum along with the images ported from the app giving the details of the entire saga!
This could be a negative side of using the technology, I am sure the folks at Apple never had the intention of developing this for the sole purpose of ‘stalking’ people. Was a bad move on the part of the man? He may have uncovered his wife’s infidelity, but his method of doing so was ethically questionable.
Do you think the man was right to do this without his wife’s knowledge? Do you think he could have used it in a positive way? Let us know what you think in our comments section