Google Maps to let you retrace your steps

Google Maps is already one of the best apps for getting you to new places, but soon it will show you where you’ve been. Like a high-tech trail of breadcrumbs, Google Maps’ new Your Timeline feature will track when and where you’ve been on a map, and even attach a time and date for your movements.

Google Maps to let you retrace your steps

The feature will be coming to web browsers first, and then Android phones – there’s no mention of iOS.

Creepy or useful?

Your Timeline only works for those with Google Maps on their smartphone, as it records your location through the app.

Google says the feature could be useful for checking out great bars you forgot the whereabouts of, your favourite running routes and much more. Interestingly, the new feature will also be incorporated into existing Google services, and the possibilities look impressive.

Your Timeline will be able to work with Google Photos to show you when and where you took your best shots. The new feature will even work with Google Now, so should be able to answer common questions such as “Where did I park my car?”

Users’ timelines will be private and visible only to them, and it will also be possible to save places you’ve been. For example, if you do find a spot you wish to return to again, saving its location is as simple as dropping a pin.

Your Timeline’s integration with Google’s other services makes it an interesting prospect, and more than just virtual breadcrumbs for the 21st century. However, it’s a chilling reminder of how much data Google keeps on us. Your Timeline may be a new feature, but it’s only displaying data Google already had.

Does that bother you, or will you be using the service? Let us know in the comments below.

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