Location history is nothing new to Google Latitude, you either opt in or you don’t when enabling the service on your phone. But a list of the places you have been can only tell you so much, so Google has launched the Location History Dashboard in beta to help identify trends in your traveling habits. It could be the places you stopped on a road trip, the places where you spend the most time, or the places you are visiting more often today than you were a year ago.
The new take on Latitude’s location history is just enough to start bringing a little more purpose to the service. Still there is no explicit check-in function and you won’t be getting any mayorships out of it, but at least now there is a more interesting way to explore the data that Latitude collects. As always, the use of location history is strictly by choice and the data is kept private.
Google claims there are over 3 million people using Latitude, and the new dashboard is sure to allow some of them to kill a bit of time examining their travel history, but if Google wants to truly best FourSquare and Gowalla they are going to have to start making the service more social. If you have been using Latitude with location history enabled, you should be able to access the feature now. If you are just enabling location history you’ll have to wait about a week for Google to pool enough data to present you with trending info.