Glympse lets Mom keep track

  • By Elizabeth Chang The Washington Post
  • Friday, August 29, 2014 2:31pm
  • LifeGo-See-Do

Here’s a helpful app for travelers, social butterflies and parents of teenagers. Glympse is designed to keep groups of people updated on one another’s whereabouts.

“Set a duration, pick a destination, choose the recipients and hit send! Glympse will take care of the rest,” it advertises. Using your phone’s GPS services, it will send a map pinpointing your location by email, SMS, Facebook or Twitter, letting people know when you’ll reach your travel destination, the bar where your friends are gathering, or the home where your parents are waiting up for you, dozing to Netflix.

The app is available for iOS, Android, BlackBerry and Windows Phones.

You don’t have to have the free app to receive a Glympse, but you do have to have one to request or send a Glympse. The company, which just raised $12 million from investors, is integrating its services with several car manufacturers, messaging apps and navigation systems.

I tried Glympse as my family caravaned from Maryland to meet my parents at the beach in Delaware. Knowing my mother would be eager to follow our progress, I downloaded the app and sent her a location update by both text and email.

My automated text to her read: “We are on our way. Tap for a Glympse of my location,” followed by a link.

“Don’t get the tap stuff,” she texted back. I forgot that my mother doesn’t have a smartphone; obviously, only devices with Web browsers can open the maps.

My mother could open the map on her iPad, but by the time she did, it showed our location from an hour earlier. Next time, I’ll specify that the map update for the maximum four hours.

Glympse’s makers say sharing a map consumes about 1 megabyte of data per hour; Glympses last a maximum of four hours not only to protect privacy but also to minimize power consumption. Both of my daughters now have the app (one had to update her phone to make it work). Unfortunately, my husband refuses to buy a smartphone, so my dream of having a Glympse group (another cool option) will have to wait.

Still, I’ve continued to use it with my daughters, and can see doing so for the long haul. My only wish is that the company would more quickly come up with a voice-command system for smartphones. At this point, it takes at least four steps to send a Glympse; more if you add the destination or a message, or want to adjust the duration. And tapping away at their phones is not something I want people doing from the road.

More in Life

Expo in Stanwood can help you get ready for the country

The Country Living Expo and Cattlemen’s Winterschool is set for Jan. 27 at the high school.

Curries continues home-cooked Indian cuisine at new location

The restaurant, now located on Evergreen Way, also puts an Indian spin on Northwest cooking.

Want to buy a house this year? Here’s how to start saving up

Here are five ways to help you put 10 percent of your income per year toward buying a house.

Beer of the Week: Scuttlebutt’s Night Circus

The Everett brewery’s head brewer had nightmares trying to dial in its new coffee and coconut ale.

A visit to the nursery helps put you in the mood to garden

Not ready to get back into gardening? January is still a fun time to poke around a garden center.

Plant of Merit: Hybrid oriental hellebores, Lenten rose

What: Oriental hybrid hellebores, with the common name Lenten rose, are a… Continue reading

Long rocking bench with strange fence is for protecting baby

The settee is a furniture form that dates to the 1810s. It’s a lengthened Windsor or Hitchcock chair.

Home and Garden calendar for Snohomish County and beyond

“The Promise of Spring”: Plant sale and workshops by Northwest Perennial Alliance,… Continue reading

‘Portlandia’ ending after eight seasons of lampooning hipsters

The sketch comedy series launched its final season this week.

Most Read