Thursday, 20 April 2017 08:49

How to see everywhere you've been on Google Maps - and stop it tracking you

Google has added a feature to its Maps app on iOS that lets users see everywhere they have been, including locations and venues visited. Called Your Timeline, the new section contains a history of all of the places users have visited that can be viewed by date, mode of transport or type of activity. For example, they can look at restaurants they have been to or how they travelled to Brighton last time they went. Google says the feature is designed to help users answer questions such as "What was the name of that antique store I popped into the other day?" or "Did I drop off the dry cleaning on Tuesday or Wednesday?" 
Here's how to find Your Timeline and, if you find it creepy, stop it from following you. 

See everywhere you have been on Google Maps 

To see the history of recent places you have been you will need to make sure you have the most recent version of the iOS app. You can check this by going to the App Store -> Updates. Once you have the updated app you will be able to see Your Timeline by tapping the three lines in the top right hand corner that open the control centre. 
Your Timeline is accessed by tapping the control centre icon in the search bar 
Your Timeline is accessed by tapping the control centre icon in the search bar  CREDIT:GOOGLE
In this section you can see the places you have visited on any given day. You can search for locations via a range of categories such as date, activity type and mode of transport used.Google has also introduced a way for users to edit their history in instances where the app hasn't quite got it right. For example, if it thinks you ate dinner at a restaurant adjacent to where you actually went you can tweak what is saved.
You can also access Your Timeline from within the map section of the app. When you open the place card for a location that you have previously visited, the dates you were there will appear in the details alongside a graph icon. Tap on this and it will give you more information about the visit such as time spent.
Google Maps Your Timeline
Place cards will now contain information about when you last visited CREDIT: GOOGLE
Google Maps can tell you the exact amount of time you were in a place for 
Google Maps can tell you the exact amount of time you were in a place for  CREDIT:GOOGLE
Users who are keen to receive regular reminders of where they have been can sign up for a monthly email outlining the highlights. They can do this by going to Your Timeline then tapping the three dots in the top right hand corner and open Settings -> toggle Timeline emails on or off.  For some people the email feature may be automatically turned on and they will need to toggle it off to stop the round-up messages. 
Google Maps Your Timeline email 
The monthly emails recap the places you've visited CREDIT: GOOGLE

Stop Google from tracking you 

If you find the location tracking creepy you can stop Google from storing the information and delete everything it has already saved. To do this, open Your Timeline and tap the three dots in the top right corner then go to Settings. In here you can limit what the app is allowed to track and delete any data it has. Alternatively you can turn location tracking off for the app within Apple's Settings section. You can select Delete Location History range to remove the places visited within a given period or tap Delete all Location History for all information collected.
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