A day in the life of an Android user... or the private info Google collects from dawn till dusk

A day in the life of an Android user... or the private info Google collects from dawn till dusk
Tucked in his research publication called "Google Data Collection," computer science professor Douglas C. Schmidt reveals that idle Android devices ping Google ten times more often than Apple's iPhones report to the spaceship campus in Cupertino. 

That's only valid for your leisure from smartphones time, once you start perusing your Android as its creator intended, you will be sending exponentially more info to Google's servers to store, crunch, and feed into its advertising machine. 



If it's free, you may be the product, a wise man once said, and Apple has used exactly that defense when faced with questions about its own user privacy practices: "the customer is not our product." Well, the cold, hard number in the report linked below prove Apple right, here's what Professor Schimdt found out in a nutshell again:



In light of the Associated Press revelations that Google pings your whereabouts even if you have turned off location tracking, this latest report is not hard to believe either. If you have the patience, read the report in its entirety, it again confirms that Google tracks you even if you have Wi-fi and Bluetooth off, via the "scanning" option in settings.

Not that Google does nefarious things with the data it collects, as it is mostly used for better targeting their bread-and-butter ad business, but the sheer fact that Google can associate anonymous user data with personal accounts' info, is not what we'd call a privacy non-event. The most fascinating part of the report, however, is the infographic below, detailing all the subtle ways Google connects with your personal life throughout the day, ready to pick up your dropped jaw?

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29 Comments

1. sgtdisturbed47

Posts: 970; Member since: Feb 02, 2012

Can't say I'm surprised seeing the difference in data collection between iOS and Android.

22. Back_from_beyond

Posts: 1475; Member since: Sep 04, 2015

You clearly didn't read the study then, because the guy who wrote it didn't even bother to investigate how much data Apple gathers on iOS, only how much data Google can collect through iOS and specifically Safari. It's like asking how much data Ford collects through Toyota on how their cars work.

23. NarutoKage14

Posts: 1348; Member since: Aug 31, 2016

Most articles on this story keep misrepresenting the information. Reading comprehension must be hard.

26. Finalflash

Posts: 4063; Member since: Jul 23, 2013

This is like the 10th article on this retarded study. Also, all of this seems to coming out near major Android and iOS device releases times. Someone's really pushing the anti-Android message and all these Apple mouthpieces are just going 24/7 in promoting the BS.

24. Rampage_Taco

Posts: 1109; Member since: Jan 17, 2017

I hear Frito-Lay can track how many Pringles a person consumes in a week...

2. Walkermoon

Posts: 38; Member since: Aug 22, 2015

This is the prime reason behind terrible idle battery drain on android. I'm not against location data collection because there are valid usage scenarios where it is actually useful. But continuous polling has a really bad effect on battery life.

8. Cat97

Posts: 1980; Member since: Mar 02, 2017

So I suppose the poor Apple users are missing out on those useful location collection usage scenarios, right ? :)

11. ullokey

Posts: 184; Member since: Jul 28, 2015

You are missing the point that piniging happens only when Chrome is running in the background

28. Walkermoon

Posts: 38; Member since: Aug 22, 2015

Sorry I'm not here to start brand flame wars. I'm here to talk tech.

27. Penny

Posts: 1869; Member since: Feb 04, 2011

I feel like this is an old and now invalid consideration. My Essential Phone's battery doesn't drain much on idle at all. I could be at 60% at the end of the day with light usage, and mid 50s the next morning. Of course, different manufacturers with different skins and customizations can make it drain as fast as their heart desires.

29. Walkermoon

Posts: 38; Member since: Aug 22, 2015

I'm no apple fan but they have the smallest battery sizes if I'm not wrong. That 60 percent figure is kind of delusional when you have a bigger battery to start with.

3. kabhijeet.16

Posts: 894; Member since: Dec 05, 2012

PhoneArena at it again. In 2 days they have written 3 articles on the same topic. Trying way too hard to defame Google & not leaving any Stone unturned in praising Apple. All the data collected consists of maximum 50% location data, which is used to improve location services, Google maps, location based app integration services, better AI capabilities. Same happens with other data collected which is interest based activities & improves on that. Without this, you cannot enjoy Android Os, free play services, free games, free apps, free maps, free email, free Google drive, lot of free cloud storage. It has better security also for that data (unlike iOS cloud where the naked photos are leaked all over).

6. Vokilam

Posts: 1380; Member since: Mar 15, 2018

man, shut up.. this is very interesting...

12. RebelwithoutaClue unregistered

First one was interesting, second one was too (since it was a different topic). But no, this one is not interesting anymore since it doesn't bring anything new to the table.

25. Vokilam

Posts: 1380; Member since: Mar 15, 2018

I didn’t see the second one that outlines an example how, google collects data throughout the day.

17. slim3bdo

Posts: 186; Member since: Jun 05, 2017

You shut up , what is interesting in hit piece after hit piece, with all based on stupid argument , read the so called study to see that is a bogus study . All what iPhone arena doing is negative ad against Google and Android for the benefit of thier beloved baby iPhone which is coming in few weeks . Same strategy iPhone arena doing all this year along by reporting any minor or stupid bug in pixel phones just for the sake to keep potential buyers off it . Mean while major bugs in ios are treated like normal development and the writers defend apple and say in it's behalf that an update soon will come to fix it . Mean while my daughter can't play magic tiles on her mother iPhone x due to terrible touch registration on the iPhone , and using my one plus 5 for the last 2 months iPhone arena stop this sh**y tactics You are supposed to be journalist not advertising site for f sake

9. Cat97

Posts: 1980; Member since: Mar 02, 2017

Once indoor location accuracy will improve, Google will know when you are at the bathroom and how long you spend there, hopefully you will consider that useful. Actually you may receive some toilet paper ads or even some por*n. All useful services ! :)

13. RebelwithoutaClue unregistered

Since indoor location accuracy is depending on indoor sensors, as long as you don't have those, it won't improve. And even with improved location accuracy, it can be useful. I use BT beacons in my house to have lights turn on in the room that I am in/going to. And can have music follow me when I want to.

19. path45th

Posts: 407; Member since: Sep 11, 2016

You are in denial. Google is really disgusting.

21. ssallen

Posts: 214; Member since: Oct 06, 2017

You are a sad Apple fanboy who just needs an evil entity to fight against. Go back to MacRumors and massage your ego there.

4. Cicero

Posts: 1149; Member since: Jan 22, 2014

What about Android and Samsung browser, with Chrome disabled. Try to get rid of the Chrome and test again. If you are unbiased than you show other scenarios with a solid base number of users.

5. CTHR100

Posts: 26; Member since: May 12, 2017

I'd like to know if it is only Chrome as well. The article they reference uses Chrome as the entire argument.

10. Cat97

Posts: 1980; Member since: Mar 02, 2017

It's probably every Google app, not only Chrome.

7. Vokilam

Posts: 1380; Member since: Mar 15, 2018

That, and same with iOS running Chrome too... I'm very interested if its Chrome or Android that's collecting most of the data..

14. Settings

Posts: 2943; Member since: Jul 02, 2014

It's a good thing I disabled and stopped using Chrome in Android and Windows. But are other browsers guilty of collecting data too?

15. cmdacos

Posts: 4333; Member since: Nov 01, 2016

I don't use Chrome but am happy with what I share. Don't care. Their services are by far the best out there and nothing they are collecting is important or that my network provider isn't gathering themselves which is the case for everyone on any platform.

16. Panzer

Posts: 283; Member since: May 13, 2016

No Chrome on my devices, but the Samsung browser is built off of Chromium which in turn is the base of Chrome, I am assuming all the analytics are built into the code. On my Linux builds I run Iridium on Debian based builds and Inox on my Arch build both of which have are a UnGoogled Chrome. The only Google apks on my device is the PlayStore. My Youtube apk is cracked commercial free version. Went through and disabled every Google apk through ADB but I am sure there is plenty more analytics built into the source code. Lots of bs to slowdown the data harvest but something is better then nothing. But I will deal with Google because no other OS has the flexibility of Android. I would love me a third option.

18. jove39

Posts: 2148; Member since: Oct 18, 2011

What is meaning of chrome browser active? There was site opened? If yes, then which site?

20. ssallen

Posts: 214; Member since: Oct 06, 2017

Meh, this is just good old FUD alarmism. This is also while Siri sucks and Assistant is much better. If you want to be reminded about picking up groceries as you pass the grocery store its going to require some traffic. If you want your phone to make elegant guesses on frequent activities its going to require some traffic. Phone Arena just doing its best Fox News impersonation again.

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