Google Maps Timeline tracks your location and shows where you've been
Published 22/07/2015 | 13:26
Google is introducing a new feature to its Maps application that allows users to see where they have been on any given day, month or year.
The search company already tracks the location of Android users, as long as they choose to share their location history with Google. This allows the company to provide more relevant and contextualised information within applications and ads.
For example, Google Now provides notifications when there are traffic incidents along your commute, or reminds you where you parked your car. Users can access and manage their location history in their account settings
However, the new feature, called Timeline, puts this information onto a map, letting users "visualise your real-world routines, easily see the trips you’ve taken and get a glimpse of the places where you spend your time," according to Google.
People who use Google Photos, Google's new app that assigns tags to objects in photos and automatically arranges them into albums, can also see all the photos they took in a specific place or on a specific day on their Timeline.
"Have you ever wanted a way to easily remember all the places you’ve been – whether it’s a museum you visited during your last vacation or that fun bar you stumbled upon a few months ago?" said Google product manager Gerard Sanz in a blog post.
"Well, starting today, Google Maps can help ... Your Timeline is private and visible only to you; and you control the locations you choose to keep."
He added that users can easily delete a day, or their full history at any time. They can also edit any place that appears their Timeline, including removing a specific location or assigning a private name like 'Mum's house' or 'My Favorite Running Spot'.
The new feature is available on desktop and Android. Any private names that are assigned to specific places will appear in Google Maps whenever the user is logged in.