Google Maps iOS Update Adds Live Location Data to 'Popular Times' Feature

MacRumors

macrumors bot
Original poster
Apr 12, 2001
49,688
11,006



Google updated its Maps app for iOS today to include the live crowd-tracking feature that's been popular with users of its Maps web service for some time.

While the maps app has had day-by-day, hour-by-hour charts that display when a business or retail location tends to be at its busiest, version 4.27 of the app augments that information with live data to tell users how busy the location is in real time.


Called Popular Times, the feature works by crowd-sourcing anonymized location data from other Google users and also feeds in Google searches to analyze how busy a location is at any given moment. Alongside the live results, the feature also lets users know the average time people spend at a location.

The iOS update also adds support for quick access to addresses copied to a user's clipboard. So when searching in the app, users are now given the option to fill in the search bar with an address copied from an email or other app.

Google Maps is a free download on the Apps Store for iPhone and iPad. [Direct Link]

Article Link: Google Maps iOS Update Adds Live Location Data to 'Popular Times' Feature
 

djcerla

macrumors 68000
Apr 23, 2015
1,830
7,675
Italy
Two weeks ago I gave Google Maps another try, as I was looking for a bar and thought it would have worked better than Apple Maps for that task.

I found myself in a small country road, in the middle of nowhere, with the app at one point stuck on some words Max Headroom style. Never again.
 

Frizers

macrumors regular
Jul 18, 2013
105
11
I'm curious as to how this works. Does it get its information from people actually running google maps, or does everyone who has google maps installed, but not necessarily running, get tracked and included in this data?
 
  • Like
Reactions: Moi Ici

ck2875

macrumors 6502a
Mar 25, 2009
996
2,594
Brighton
I'm curious as to how this works. Does it get its information from people actually running google maps, or does everyone who has google maps installed, but not necessarily running, get tracked and included in this data?
I think it pulls in location data from any Google app with location tracking enabled and the location privacy set to "always". So Google, Keep, Gboard, Google+, etc would also get thrown into the mix for providing them with your location. Also likely using a lot of GPS data from Android devices.
 

avanpelt

macrumors 68030
Jun 2, 2010
2,932
3,802
Constantly tracking my location isn't creepy at all.
If you don't want your location to be constantly tracked, you shouldn't use a cell phone at all. By virtue of the fact that you have any cell phone on your person that's turned on and connected to a cell network, someone, somewhere is able to track your current location and also track where you've been.
 

_mdavenport

macrumors regular
Aug 23, 2015
249
490
California, USA
A welcome addition to the iOS app.

Now if Google could add the "typical traffic" feature from their web app to the iOS app, that would be amazing. Such a useful feature, it confuses me why it's not in the iOS app - unless it is and I don't know how to find it? Anyone know about this?
 
  • Like
Reactions: TouchedByAl

campyguy

macrumors 68040
Mar 21, 2014
3,413
953
I'm curious as to how this works. Does it get its information from people actually running google maps, or does everyone who has google maps installed, but not necessarily running, get tracked and included in this data?
https://support.google.com/business/answer/6263531?hl=en

I'm opening a retail location late summer/early fall and wondered that very thought - there's a fairly simplistic post by Google on their Business site. There's more in that post, the relevant language follows:

About visit data
To determine popular times and visit duration, Google uses aggregated and anonymized data from users who have opted in to Google Location History. Popular times and visit duration are shown for your business if it gets enough visits from these users. You can’t manually add this information to your location, and you may not see it if Google doesn’t have sufficient visit data for your business.
 
Register on MacRumors! This sidebar will go away, and you'll see fewer ads.