Google Is Tracking Whether You Are Staying At Home Or Not

google tracking lockdown

Alphabet Incorporation’s Google recently unveiled reports of how people are conforming to staying at homes amidst lockdown. The rationale behind this tracking is to keep data of the coronavirus patients in different countries around the globe. Google manifests that it uses location data from users’ smartphones about their movement towards, grocery stores, and other places. This counts for places situated in 131 countries.

Public health officials say that this same type of aggregated, anonymized data could be helpful as they make critical decisions to combat the deadly pandemic.

Global statistics claim that the Coronavirus has infected more than 1,000,000 people, whilst killing 60,398.

The functionality behind google’s tracker

According to Google, the company is using aggregated data, of those places, which are heaving with people in on normal days.

Specifically, those users who have enabled their ‘Location History’ feature on their smartphones, will show up in Google’s database. On the contrary, this feature won’t work for those, who do not own a smartphone or a device with Google’s Map application in it.

google tracking lockdown

Image: pcmag

With that, the tracking platform enumerates that the data is certainly not for guidance on personal travel plans. Therefore, it must not be misused for medical diagnostic, prognostic and treatment purposes.

To ensure safety regarding privacy, the company is using certain technical measures so that no user can be identified.

CEO of Google, Sundar Pichai stated, “These reports show how visits and length of stay at different places change in comparison with a baseline. We calculate these changes using the same kind of aggregated and anonymized data used to show popular times for places in Google Maps.”

Analyzing data of previous days

Following, Google presented data, showing trends of the previous two to three days. According to it, there was a 70% drop in visits to retail and recreation spaces in comparison to normal periods. Precisely, this comprises of mobility trends for places such as restaurants, cafes, shopping centers, theme parks, museums, libraries, and cinemas.

The trend devised a drop of 55% in people shopping for groceries and pharmaceuticals. Following, a substantial decrease of 45% in visits to national parks, beaches, plazas, and public gardens.

google tracking lockdown

Image: google

The loftiest drop was seen in people using public transports, like buses and train station visits. Meanwhile, the downside of the trend depicted a decline of 41% in workers visiting their respective workplaces.

On the downside, there was an 18% increase in visits to residential places, homes, etc.

At this time, Google is trying its best to help the world fight against the COVID-19 pandemic. Apart from this tracking innovation, the company recently launched its Coronavirus info site.


What do you think of this story? Tell us in the comments section below.

To Top