In a recent report, some tech-minded individuals did some digging into the newly released iOS 4.3 developer build version and found new settings for a feature called “Find my Friends”.
The strings are associated with the Settings app and are related to “MobileMe”, according to the report.
The obvious interpretation is that Apple may be looking at offering a location-based friend-finding service.
Whether the location-based service will be similar than that of Loopt or Google’s Latitude, still remains unknown.
Loopt allows users to find their friends who are near you at any given time by leveraging you mobile phone’s GPS signal. Constant updates can broadcast your location to your friends. These services are generally opt-in based services.
This is a good indication of what Apple may be up to with their new MobileMe service in 2011.
During December 2010, Steve Jobs, CEO of Apple, said in a statement that the MobileMe service will get a lot better in 2011. He did not reveal any more information on the service.
Over the last few years, location-based services have seen huge growth in popularity. A number of companies offering location-based services include Facebook, Twitter and Foursquare.
It has also been speculated at the International CES in Las Vegas that location-based services and technology will be experiencing a huge growth rate in 2011, and is expected to become one of the years’ biggest technology.