Tip of the Week: Did You Know Google Maps Tracks Your Travels?
Do you use Google Maps as your primary GPS device? If you do, then you may (or may not) be surprised to learn that Google keeps track of everywhere you’ve been. While this may come off as a bit creepy, there is a cool side to it; you can access Location History and see all the places you’ve traveled on any given day.
Technically, this feature only works if you have Location History enabled. Therefore, if you have it turned off, then you’re not going to be able to see where you’ve been. If, however, you have Location History turned on, then you’re in for a tracking treat. Here’s how to access your very own personalized Google Map:
First, here’s how to turn Location History on and off. Once you’re logged into your Google account, access your account’s Activity Controls by following this URL: https://myaccount.google.com/activitycontrols
Scroll down the page until you see Location History. The toggle button below the image is what turns this feature off and on. Feel free to adjust this feature to best suit your privacy preference.
Now, to see your very own personalized Google Map of everywhere you carried your phone, visit this URL:
On the main screen, you will see a map that’s populated with red dots of places you have been. Don’t remember when you visited that particular red dot? Double-click the dot and all will be revealed, down to the specific time you were there and the route you took to get there (even if you were on foot).
Across the bottom of the screen, you can cycle through all of the different days that you traveled. As a bonus, if you happened to have taken any photos with your mobile device during the selected day, these pictures will show up in the timeline, along with geotag information like the time the photos were taken and the image’s precise location.
If you go back to your main screen, you’ll see three more cool features; X Places, See your most visited places, and More trips. Click on these links to discover where you spend most of your time, and to get an overview of your major trips.
All in all, even the staunchest advocate of privacy has to admit that these are some pretty cool tracking features. Although, feeling comfortable enough to give Google all of this data about oneself will definitely vary from person to person. What about you? Does seeing this kind of detailed information about your travels excite you or freak you out? Share your thoughts with us in the comments.