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Google Maps will disable live directions if you don’t agree to data collection

Make sure you accept the new prompt if you want to keep using turn-by-turn directions.

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Image: KnowTechie

Google Maps has become one of the most recent apps to add a transparency prompt that tells users exactly what kind of data it is collecting. As it turns out, declining that prompt or disabling the app’s data collection will remove the ability to use the app for turn-by-turn directions.

According to a new report from 9to5Google, Maps users on both iOS and Android are now seeing a prompt that tells them exactly what kind of data the app is collecting whenever the user presses “Start” on the navigation screen. If you press “Cancel” on that screen instead of “Start,” the app will disable turn-by-turn directions, and instead offer you only the step-by-step overview of your trip.

The prompt gives a basic overview of what kind of information Maps is collecting. By collecting this data, the app is able to provide accurate, real-time traffic and travel information. The data also helps find the best routes for users to take at any given time.

Google Maps has always collected this kind of data, but the prompt is new. There has been a big push towards user privacy lately, and this is no doubt an effort to maintain more transparency. The prompt also emphasizes that Maps data won’t be associated with your Google account in any way, which will come as a relief.

All in all, it’s not very surprising to see that Google Maps collects a substantial amount of data. The app offers some impressive functionality, like speed, traffic, weather conditions, and potential disruptions, and that simply wouldn’t be possible without the ability to collect user data.

Of course, you can continue to use the app after you disable data collection, but you’ll be missing out on most of the features that make the app so useful.

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Staff writer at KnowTechie. Alex has two years of experience covering all things technology, from video games to electric cars. He's a gamer at heart, with a passion for first-person shooters and expansive RPGs. Shoot him an email at alex@knowtechie.com

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