Google has updated their Google mobile application to allow people to get news that is personalized to their interests. Previously, the application (formerly Google Now) was capable of being the hub for you to quickly do searches, get weather updates or get news that was just general to your browsing habits. With this update, the news that you will be able to see will be tailored to your interests.
Google has seen that they have a lot of their data on their hands so they’ve decided to put it to good use. The news feed will now be powered by complex algorithms that go over your data from way back, analyze it and then come up with a lineup of news articles that aim to be aligned with your interests. It will be able to find out what kind of your habits were just phases and which ones are more long terms.
So you could go through a season where you will be really interested in artificial intelligence or something else. During that time period, it will learn from your search history, both past and present and then decide whether to show you AI related article during that time or not. For some, this is a very big privacy issue as people don’t like having their data used even if it is to provide them with a better experience.
The good thing though is that you have an option to turn off the feed feature. Many have commented saying that this is a move by Google to tackle Facebook’s feed. However, considering how that Facebook is really big in Zimbabwe, this feature might not impact many people locally but it’s always good to know what Google is up to with your search history.
For some it’s a good addition as you don’t have to go through any extra setup in order for you to receive news updates that are in line with what you like. You can just go on about your life and browse openly and Google will figure out the rest. In case you’re in the camp of people who don’t want that, you can just browse in Incognito mode and keep a bit of your privacy.