Google includes a feature which allows them to keep wi-fi on in the background, presumably so apps might have the benefit of location based awareness and responsiveness. However, this means tapping that power hungry GPS chip. The feature is off by default, and can be access by going to Settings, Wi-Fi, Advanced Wi-Fi and checking, or unchecking, the ‘Scanning always available’ box.
Meanwhile, a similar feature in the iPhone iOS7 has been reported, see: iPhone Settings > Privacy > Location Services > System Services > Favorite Locations.
Some have disabled Location Services in a harried attempt to protect their privacy and suddenly find all their apps—from Maps to Facebook and FourSquare—rendered useless. If you’re concerned just disable Favorite Locations.
Meanwhile, iOS 7 asks users may opt in to help improve Apple’s Maps app — those who opt in will have the street address associated with their Apple ID matched with the GPS coordinates of addresses saved to your “frequent locations” list.
It seems people are just waking up to the limited concept of consumer privacy afforded in today’s connected and interconnected societies. So while you enjoy your FourSquare style walk down memory lane, recall that one you chose to disclose, and the other you is disclosed for you — call it a package deal, the cost of latest and greatest technologies to market and advertise and otherwise target a geo-loc tracked connected society.
Why hello there cyborgs, I’ve been expecting you.
- Estes, Adam C. “iOS 7 Tracks Your Every Move And Displays Your Favourite Places.” Gizmodo Australia. N.p., 08 Aug. 2013. Web. 08 Aug. 2013.
- Woollaston, Victoria. “Is Google following You? Internet Giant’s Latest Mobile Operating System Tracks User’s Location Even When Wi-Fi Is Switched OFF.” Daily Mail. N.p., 07 Aug. 2013. Web. 08 Aug. 2013.
- Baxley, Angela M. “Cyborg Madness: Information, Power and Dehumanization” SpunkyGidget N.p., 07 Apr. 2007. Web. 08 Aug. 2013.