November 29, 2021
Business News

Google is watching you: Technology giant releases Kilkenny travel stats as we trade work for home

If anyone was wondering whether the global technology giants were really watching our every move, the answer would appear to be yes.

Google has released information harvested from our devices which use its software, such as Google Maps on smart phones, to show the extent to which Covid-19 restrictions are changing our usual movements in Kilkenny.

The latest report reveals how visits and length of stay at various locations have been altered when compared to before the restrictions were introduced.

Under its ‘Retail & recreation’, which includes shopping centres, cinemas and restaurants but not grocery stores and pharmacies, Kilkenny has seen a 82% fall in visits.

‘Parks’ and public spaces have recorded a drop of 65%, while ‘Workplace’ has seen a fall of 47% and 77% for ‘Transit stations’.

Grocery stores and pharmacies, unsurprisingly, have seen the smallest drop at 37% while ‘Residential’ has increased by a dramatic 65% as people stay indoors inline with Government advice.

The figures in Kilkenny are broadly similar to the National trends and Google has said it will continue to publish the information in the coming weeks and months as it claims that data can help combat the spread of Covid-19.

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  1. im not sure why they release this information tbh. its only mildly interesting and apart from having the exact percentage, you could have just expected these numbers for the most part. so what was the point in google sharing this? do they really think this information will do anything to help or are they just trying to normalise the fact that they collect all this information?

    anyway, for anyone who is feel uneasy about this type of profiling/tracking i would recommend checking out “Maps.me” on android or iphone. it uses OpenStreetMap as their base map which is a free crowd sourced map that anyone can edit (sort of like Wikipedia in a way). although being community based does mean that the map can be hit and miss in some places, but Kilkenny is actually in pretty good shape compared to other counties. it really depends how many mappers are in the area but its fairly easy to sign up for an account and add something thats missing

    there is also an ongoing campaign at the moment to map every building in Ireland, and Kilkenny was the first county to have all buildings added so its getting very close to having a complete useable map

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