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December 14, 2023

Unlocking Control, Google Maps Enhances Privacy Features for Users

The world's go-to navigation app is unleashing fresh tools to put you in the driver's seat of your personal information

In a bid to empower users with more control over their personal information, Google Maps unveiled a series of updates today. These enhancements not only streamline the deletion of location-related activities but also provide convenient access to critical location controls directly from the app's signature blue dot.

Soon, users will have the ability to effortlessly review and delete their recent activity tied to specific places, encompassing searches, directions, visits, and shares. Imagine heading to a local bakery—now, you can easily manage and erase your Maps interactions linked to that bakery with just a few taps.

Taking a step further in user-friendly functionality, Google Maps introduces a novel approach to location controls via the familiar blue dot. Clicking on the blue dot will grant users instant visibility into the status of their Location History and Timeline settings, along with permissions for accessing the device's location.

These noteworthy updates, allowing precise deletion of place-related activity and introducing the blue dot controls, are slated to roll out on both Android and iOS platforms in the coming weeks.

Moreover, Google Maps ensures that users who opt for Location History will have their Time data saved directly on their device. Marlo McGriff, Google Map’s Director of Product, emphasized users' data control, stating, "Just like before, you can delete all or part of your information at any time or disable the setting entirely. If you’re getting a new phone or are worried about losing your existing one, you can always choose to back up your data to the cloud so it doesn’t get lost."

In a move to enhance user privacy, the auto-delete control for Location History will default to three months when initially activated—a significant reduction from the previous 18-month default setting.

Anticipated to roll out gradually over the next year on both Android and iOS, users will be promptly notified when these privacy-centric updates become available in their accounts. As Google Maps continues to prioritize user control and data security, these features mark a significant stride toward a more transparent and user-friendly navigation experience.

Josefina Dipaolo
Josefina Dipaolo
Content writer at TechNews180
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