Google Maps’ New Feature Remembers Your Every Move

Maybe you want to remember the name of that amazing restaurant you ate at on your trip to Italy. Or maybe you just get distracted a lot and forgot where you left your razor scooter… for the third time in a week. Whichever the case, Google Maps wants you help you revisit all the places you’ve been.

The search engine giant has rolled out a new Google Maps feature called “Timeline” that allows you to view your entire location history. The feature pulls data from your devices when signed into your Google account, tracking your path with photos from the places you’ve been, assuming you uploaded them to Google drive. For example, say you went on a Fourth of July bar crawl and woke up with a nasty hangover; you can now view your Google Maps Timeline and pinpoint the exact spot in the bar crawl where you foolishly had that third long island ice tea – and left your credit card.


The feature is undoubtedly going to be met with delight from some and with a “Oh God, when will the big brother tracking ever end?!” from others. Really, it all depends on how often you enjoy retracing your steps and trekking down nostalgia lane.

Doubters of the new tool might be able to put some of their concerns to rest with Google product manager Gerard Sanz, explaining that the user has complete control of the data pulled and who gets to see it.

“Your Timeline is private and visible only to you; and you control the locations you choose to keep. This means you can easily delete a day or your full history at any time. You can edit any place that appears in Your Timeline, including removing a specific location or giving a frequented spot a private name like Mom’s House or My Favorite Running Spot.”

Google already has PLENTY of your data after a change to its privacy policy in 2012 that outraged a lot of people – most of whom didn’t stop using the service. So offering complete access of the data to its users is commendable. Plus, it’s kinda nice to have the option of deleting and editing certain days. Nobody wants a boring day spent at the DMV clogging up their “Most Epic Summer Ever” timeline.

All in all, it’s a pretty cool feature and may prove to be a valuable tool for law enforcement. No word yet on whether the feature will come with sharing or embed options. Important to note, it is only available right now on desktop and Android.

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