Google’s fight to maintain relevancy in the increasingly competitive LBS segment is even more apparent with its just announced rollout of checkin deals through its Latitude mobile app.
Like Foursquare, Facebook and numerous others that secured a lengthy head start on the search giant, Google now serves up location-based offers based on where users check in. To switch things up a bit, however, the offers via Latitude are based on a new “status” system. Offers such as “20% off at American Eagle Outfitters” can only be unlocked with statuses such as “Regular,” “VIP” or “Guru,” although these titles are customizable by Google’s partners. Like similar models, the more a user checks in, the higher their status.
Google already boasts an impressive list of partners to kick things off, including Arby’s, Macy’s, RadioShack, Finish Line, Famous Footwear, Great Clips, Naturalizer, Tasti D-Lite, Quiznos, Wireless Zone, Cellairis, PostNet and American Eagle Outfitters. The deals are pretty good too. As an example, Quiznos is offering customers a free sub when they buy one of equal or greater value, as long as the customer has reached the status of “Champion of Taste.”
While Google is no doubt behind in an already super competitive and potentially lucrative industry, the company can count its immense reach and the fact that it’s pre-installed via Google Maps on all Android devices and a major asset. Still, only time will tell if users respond.