From the official Google Maps blog:
One important change you should know about is that Latitude and check-ins are no longer part of the new Google Maps app, and will be retired from older versions on August 9. We understand some of you still want to see your friends and family on a map, which is why we've added location sharing and check-ins to Google+ for Android (coming soon to iOS). More details about Latitude and check-in changes can be found in our help center.
From the Help Centre:
Google Latitude will be retired on August 9th, 2013. Products being retired include Google Latitude in Google Maps for Android, Latitude for iPhone, the Latitude API, the public badge, the iGoogle Gadget, and the Latitude website at maps.google.com/latitude.
What does this mean for me?
- You’ll no longer be able to share your location using Latitude after retirement.
- We haven’t included Latitude as a feature in the latest version of Google Maps for mobile on Android and we’ll remove Latitude for iPhone on the App Store.
- Applications that use the Latitude API will no longer be able to access your location data, including Location History data, on Google servers. However, these non-Google applications may continue to store data they’ve already accessed. Please contact the developer of these applications for more information.
- Location History - As long as you don’t delete your Location History, you can find it in the Location History dashboard.
- Friends list - your Latitude friends list will be deleted.
It's somewhat telling that Google's older mobile applications aren't mentioned by name here, but if the back end for Latitude goes then so must the functionality on older clients.
The friend-tracking/check-in service never really took off in the meainstream, predating the likes of Foursquare, and is effectively replaced by the location features in Google+ and its Google Maps integration, though this is all heavily biased towards Android (naturally) and (to a lesser extent) iOS.
Rest In Peace, Google Latitude, in truth we hardly knew you...