Daring Fireball is wrong about Google Play Services

The big thing is that it’s available on 98.7 percent of active Android devices. So for Google’s own services, Android fragmentation is a solved problem. I don’t see how this helps third-party developers deal with Android fragmentation, though (other than integration between their apps and Google services). Google has solved their own fragmentation problem, and that’s it.

That's not true. Google Play Services also acts as the frameworks and APIs that application developers can use.

A little shocked that John Gruber didn't know that or care to find out.

It is via Google Play Services that the new location features are provided to Android devices.