Track the whereabouts of your family and friends by having them install GPS locator apps on their smartphones or tablets and asking them to privately share their location with you. Here are five such apps that can be downloaded for free from the Google Play store.
Real Time GPS Tracker
Especially handy during an outdoor trip or when traveling to another country with your entire family, the Real Time GPS Tracker app displays exact user locations and details (such as elevation, speed, etc.) on Google Maps. A status bar icon appears when the app is activated. Note that there is no way to hide the icon because Real Time GPS Tracker is not designed to stealthily track people. Using the default configuration of this free app consumes battery power fast. So, if you want to prolong battery life, choose higher update intervals or track positions using cell towers and not via GPS.
Like Real Time GPS Tracker, Glympse is another excellent digital tool for safely sharing your GPS location with your friends and family. Use this free app to track your kids’ locations or to broadcast to family members your whereabouts while cycling, for example. With Glympse, your approved users can view a dynamic map of your location on their Web-connected Android smartphones or tablets.
Unlike Glympse and Real Time GPS Tracker, the free GPS Share app does not run in the background to continuously track locations. It allows you to privately share a link containing your current GPS coordinates or position as indicated on a Google Map to another person. GPS Share comes in most handy when you are meeting someone in a large, crowded place; simply send to that person an SMS text message containing the link to your current GPS details.
On top of its impressive GPS tracking service, mCouple is equipped with other tracking capabilities that can be overly intrusive, especially for people who put a premium on their privacy. With the free mCouple app, “mutual monitoring” is made possible by allowing another user to view your call logs, the content of the SMS text messages you’ve sent and received, as well as all your Facebook chats and private messages.
Mobile Location Tracker
What sets apart this free locator app is its effectiveness in finding Android devices even when GPS is not available. Simply enter the time interval for when you want locations to be tracked and recorded on Google Maps. With Mobile Location Tracker, you can also ask your friends and family to share their current location with you in a single click.