In today’s digital era, maintaining privacy, especially regarding location data, can seem challenging, often relying on companies to implement effective measures. Addressing this concern, Google has introduced enhanced location controls for Maps, empowering users with greater authority over their data.
A notable change is the introduction of an option to store your Timeline directly on your device instead of in the cloud. The Timeline is a secure record of all the places and points of interest you’ve visited. To activate the Timeline, you must enable Location History, which is turned off by default. With the updates to Google Maps, Location History will now automatically delete your data after three months, a significant reduction from the previous 18 months. Users have the flexibility to delete information at their discretion or disable auto-delete. Additionally, turning off Location History remains an option whenever needed.
Regarding Location History, Google Maps now provides the ability to click on your blue dot on the map, granting access to settings like Location History and Timeline. This convenient shortcut allows you to modify the extent to which your information is shared with and stored on Google Maps, eliminating the need to navigate through your settings.
Moreover, Google Maps introduces a new feature enabling the deletion of location-specific data. For instance, if you were researching a restaurant to surprise your partner on their birthday and wish to keep it a secret, you can delete directions, searches, shares, and more. While these features and the blue dot shortcut will be available on Android and iOS in the coming weeks, the option to save your Timeline directly to your device is anticipated to be introduced within the next year.