XDA Basics: How to view your Location History in Google Maps, and How to turn it off
Google stores location data about everywhere you go and the places you visit with its location history option, even when you’re not using Google Maps. Although Google’s Location History is turned off by default, there are quite a few features offered by the company that require the location history to be turned on. So unless you’re privacy-conscious and intentionally keeping the setting off, there’s a significant chance that location history is turned on for your Google account. It’s an account-level setting and Google uses every mobile device on which you have set up that particular account to track you.
If you’re wondering how you can check your location history in Google Maps, the company has made it fairly easy to do so. In this guide, we’ll tell you exactly how you can find your location history on both mobile and desktop.
How to see your location history using Google Maps Timeline on mobile
Google offers a feature called Google Maps Timeline that shows an estimate of the places you’ve visited and routes you’ve taken using the data from your location history.
Here are the instructions to view this data.
- Launch Google Maps on Android or iOS.
- Tap on your profile picture next to the search bar.
- Tap on Your Timeline.
- Google Maps will now show your timeline (location history). You can tap on the calendar to see your location history for any particular day. You’ll see the route taken by you on that day as well as the length and duration of the journey.
- You can also select the Places, Cities, and World tabs to view all the places (like hotels, restaurants, airports, and shops), cities, and countries visited by you.
How to see your location history using Google Maps Timeline on desktop
- Unlike on mobile, you can directly open the Google Maps Timeline on desktop — just head over to Google Maps.
- On the Timeline page, you’ll see a map filled with dots representing the places visited by you. You can click on these dots to get more details.
- You can also select a particular day from the date picker on the top left side and Google Maps will show you where you went on that day, along with the route, duration, and length of the trip.
- At the bottom of the page, you’ll also see a counter highlighting the total number of places visited by you. You can click on it to get the full list.
- Further, there is a trips section next to it to show the trips taken by you. You can click on More Trips to get the full list.
- The Timeline page also provides a link to manage your location history settings as well as letting you tweak your Home and Work addresses.
So these are the two ways to check your location history on mobile and the web.
How to turn location history off in Google Maps on mobile
If you’re creeped out about the sheer amount of location data Google is collecting on you, you can turn location history off. It’s fairly straightforward.
- Open the Google Maps app and tap on your profile picture.
- Then tap on Settings and navigate to Personal content.
- On the Personal content settings page, scroll down to “Location history is on” and tap on it.
- Google will now take you to Activity controls in your Google Account and you can just toggle Location History open.
- Here, if you don’t want to turn location history off, you have the option to auto-delete your location data older than 3, 18, or 36 months.
How to turn location history off in Google Maps on desktop
- You can jump directly to the Activity controls page in your Google Account. You may be asked to sign in if you aren’t already logged in.
- Here, you can either turn location history off or manage the auto-delete options.
So that’s how you can turn off location history in your Google account settings. If you’d rather not turn off the feature entirely, you can also instruct Google to auto-delete your older data, including location history, every 3 months or so.
What are your thoughts on Google’s location history feature? Let us know in the comments section. Meanwhile, don’t forget to check everything we expect to see in Android 12.