Google developing 'Mobile Meter' to track mobile usage and offer rewards

Google is reportedly readying an app for Android and iOS that would collect usage data from mobile users of the platforms and reward them in return.

The search giant is known to hoard a large amount of user-specific data to improve their algorithms and targeted ads for end-users. Now, it seems Google would like to have deeper usage statistics from their users, for which they are willing to reward the users who choose to opt for the program. Google hasn't commented on the existence of such an app yet but sources for Engadget have confirmed that it is indeed coming out soon and will be completely voluntary. 

On many occasions in the past Google has come under fire for its privacy policies. It already collects a large amount of geo-location data from Android users who use their location and mapping technologies which has resulted in lawsuits in the past. The 'Mobile Meter' app is expected to collect app usage statistics and browsing behaviour patterns among users. It is understood that Google will anonymize the data of the participants but users will need more reassurance from the company in wake of the PRISM expose and general distrust in data collection among users.

For now we can only speculate what Google has in store until there is an official statement.

Source: Engadget | Image via Google

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19 Comments

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How's this evil? If you don't want whatever rewards they offer in exchange for your data just ignore it and don't sign-in.

If anything this is probably the most open and straight forward non evil data collecting scheme Google has ever concocted.

What's with the picture. If you are going to post news here, try not to show your opinion unless it is an editorial.

In any case, I am opting in as soon as it is available. It is no different than Bing Rewards except this is something I naturally use instead of something I have to force myself to use.

A long history of lying most recently "my car got the best safety rating ever" when it didn't, "the fire was contained to one small module" when we can clearly see the entire thing engulfed, and twice "we made a profit" when they didn't. It seems be all based on stock pumping.

I used to love Google, and not really care about targeted ads, but they've started to creep me out.

I recently got a text on my Windows Phone (which I use for 2 step authentication with Google) advertising a product specifically related to a topic I'd watched a lot of videos for on YouTube the day before (on PC). Even crazier, I hadn't logged in to YouTube under the Google account which uses my phone for 2 step verification, but a completely unrelated account.

I almost never get spam texts, and this was way too specific to be a coincidence. It totally freaked me out.

Edited by thomastmc, Oct 15 2013, 12:35am :

It's Neowin, why are you surprised? They have very little quality writers here. Most of them just seem like high school writers showing their bias. This is unprofessional to a whole new level.

DarkNet said,
It's Neowin, why are you surprised? They have very little quality writers here. Most of them just seem like high school writers showing their bias. This is unprofessional to a whole new level.

Yet you read It. Strange.

Spicoli said,
Yet you read It. Strange.

Actually I read the news yesterday when it first broke out. I was commenting on the photo. Yet another "quality" of Neowin. Thanks for paying attention. Thanks for proving my point, yet again. Far too easy.

DarkNet said,
It's Neowin, why are you surprised? They have very little quality writers here. Most of them just seem like high school writers showing their bias. This is unprofessional to a whole new level.

What is really dumb is the fact that Google is allowing people to do this for $$$. So since Google is rewarding participants, not forcing users to participate, and notify users of the program...there still is an "evil" logo of Google plastered in the OP.