I’m not usually one who reviews apps on my blog. I try to be more profound then that, but this time I just gotta give a shout-out to an app that blew my socks off on our recent family road trip – Glympse.
It’s a great little app to use that gives anyone you share it with a live-feed, updated “glimpse” into your location, direction, speed of travel and even an estimated time of arrival. Their tagline of Share Your Where is … spot-on.
Why We Liked It
Our family of seven (7!?) did a road trip from Redmond, WA to Midway, UT. I had taken a quick look at Glympse at work and thought it might be a useful tool to test out. The interface was fairly straightforward and, after setting up my social connections as desired, I created a Glympse to share with our family members.
This time we chose to drive through the night while the in-laws and other family followed our progress as we drove through Eastern Washington, through Ellensburg and Yakima. They texted us encouraging words as we crossed into Oregon, Idaho and eventually into Utah in the wee hours of the morning.
We made it safe and sound and – the best part – they had a hot breakfast waiting for us since they knew exactly where we were the whole time.
Glympse became the favorite app of the trip as other family, also traveling to our family reunion, used the app and we observed their on-the-road progress as they journeyed up from California.
The options of who to share it with and how – via text message, email, Twitter and Facebook are fantastic and simple.
It has an auto Expiration setting so you don’t inadvertently leave your Glympse open for people to see. This can be set to a little as 15 minutes up to 4 hours.
It comes with pre-canned messages that you can use or you can create your own.
You can also set your destination and it runs a simple algorithm to figure out your estimated time of arrival.
It is a little weird thinking that people know exactly where you are and how fast you’re traveling. Well … it kinda knows. Glympse said at one time I was traveling at 103 mph which wasn’t accurate.
It seems to use a lot of battery power; however, I’m not sure if that’s the app or the cel network. I’m an iPhone user and on that particular route I noted that sometimes I was on 4G, 3G or even on Edge networks. That’s gotta eat battery life, but hey, that’s why I had it on the charger the whole time.
I’ve not been able to Delete Expired Glympses yet – they seem to keep showing up in my app, and that’s a little problematic. I’ve also had difficulty in using Favorites as I’m not clear on how this works, but that may be just user-error / lack of experience with the app.
Lastly, again on that Expiration time, I had to keep upping the time manually as our trip was about 15 hours. I’d like an override option to leave a Glympse open until I reach the pre-set destination. Then I wouldn’t have check to make sure the Glympse didn’t expire.
The drawbacks were overshadowed by the benefits and you should definitely give this app a try.
How Do They Make Money?
I’ve no idea how this app makes money now but I definitely see a path where they could. Luckily I’m meeting with some of the Glympse team soon.
They could make this part of the native iOS as a safety measure. Incorporate it
with Siri and Glympse could dramatically improve cel phone safety while driving. I would guess a large percentage of texting while driving are things pertaining to location or, “are you close?” types of questions.
Combining Glympse and PIRQ and you’ve got location-based dining options at your fingertips.
Share Your Where