Introduction of Location History Change Feature on Google Maps

Introduction of Location History Change Feature on Google Maps

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Last December, Google announced that location history would soon be stored in the Maps app on your phone instead of the cloud.

This change is being rolled out on the Google Maps timeline and will result in your web timeline being discontinued.

When this location data was stored on Google’s servers, it was subject to broad geofence warrants that allowed law enforcement to request all information about devices near a particular incident. With this change, Google can no longer respond to such requests.

As part of this change, location history is now called “Timeline.” This information has long been used in the famous “Your Timeline” feature, which shows where you’ve been, including specific locations you may have visited.

Introduction of Location History Change Feature on Google Maps

This data is compiled into trips, places, cities, and the world (countries), while Google also creates insights, such as the distance you’ve travelled using a particular mode of transportation.

The “Your Timeline” feature will continue functioning on Google Maps for Android and iOS. However, this new on-device storage model means that “the web version of the Maps timeline will disappear.”

Since the data displayed on your timeline comes directly from your device, the timeline will no longer be available on Maps on your computer after your data is transferred to your phone.

Introduction of Location History Change Feature on Google Maps

You will receive notifications via email and the app once this change is available in your account. Google has been rolling it out slowly over the past few months, and it has yet to be widely available.

The company warns that if you do not update your settings by the deadline in the emails and notifications you receive, you may lose some or all of your timeline data, such as visits and routes.

Once enabled, you can “automatically back up your timeline if you need to switch devices.” This includes an end-to-end encrypted copy of your data stored on Google’s servers, accessible only by you.

You can transfer an existing backup to a different device or import your timeline to a new one.

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