Google to integrate Buzz and Latitude?

Back in 2007, Google launched Latitude - a GPS-based system which keeps track of your location and allows friends that you'd carefully selected to see where you are. More recently, when Google launched Buzz, it also launched a mobile application which offers almost the same functionality but with the ability to broadcast information alongside your location.

Some wondered if this meant that Google was replacing Latitude with Buzz, and while Google's Steve Lee, product manager for Google Maps for mobile and Google Latitude said that for now they're still separate projects, he refused to rule out integrating them at a future point in time.

Lee said: "Down the road, there might be points of integration between Buzz and Latitude, but they are separate products and have different use cases. We're thinking of what apps we can build that have certain compelling use cases and how can location enhance those apps. We see location is like one of the sensors on a phone, so we are going to weave it throughout many services".

Interestingly, Latitude managed to avoid a privacy whirlwind by making pretty much every one of its features opt-in. Buzz, on the other hand, suffered a storm after automatically adding friends based on how often you email people. Google was forced to withdraw that functionality, and instead reverted to a more conservative approach.