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What we don't realize Google learns from Android devices

3:01 pm on Jun 4, 2014 (gmt 0)

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You probably already realized that Google Android devices are everywhere. They have great market share (over 50% in the USA). What do you think Google is learning from the Android devices?

This article [theconnectivist.com...] talks about how Google is using Android devices to provide real time traffic reports.

Strap on your tin foil hats (or just tighten it up if you never take yours off) and let's theorize the different SEO things Google could theoretically do with Android devices.

For example Google could theoretically figure out which sites have a higher bounce rate and rank them lower in mobile search results

What SEO stuff do you think Google is or could learn from Android devices?
4:53 pm on June 4, 2014 (gmt 0)

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Probably easier to say what Google ISN'T learning from Android devices.

Safe to say they are probably getting every bit of data they possibly can from what you do with your phone.

From the browser they can tell which websites you visit (which tells them what you're interested in), how long you spend on each page/site, which parts of the page you view and interact with, and generally build up a picture of your surfing habits and interests.

From the phone they can tell where you are, where you've been, your regular movements (going to work, where you work, what type of work you do), your irregular movements (where you went on holiday, for the day or weekend). From their own mapping data they can then work out whether you've been shopping, eating out, getting a takeaway and know which shops, restaurants and takeaways you went to, which hotels you stayed at.

By the speed you travel they could also tell how you go there (by foot, car, bicycle).

Then when you search for something they can use everything they know about your habits, preferences, where you are and what time of day it is to serve up search results and ads that nail your requirements without even needing you to enter a full search phrase.

So when you're away for the weekend and you normally have a takeaway Chinese on a Saturday night, and you search for "Chinese" at 6pm on a Saturday, the search results will return Chinese takeaways near to where you are (and maybe restaurants or other relevant eating establishments in the vicinity as alternative options, just from you entering "Chinese" into the search box). Search for "hotel" and you'll see results for the types of nearby hotels you generally prefer first in the results.

That's just what I can imagine they'd do and how it would effect search results and SEO. I'm probably not being imaginative enough though.
5:05 pm on June 4, 2014 (gmt 0)

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I don't believe Google would use the bounce rate in 2014 as a ranking metric!

Given how many sites now offer a complete AJAX experience (a superior user experience) it would show as a 100% bounce rate!

The bounce rate is the most flawed metric going for another reason, a high bounce rate can just as easily mean the user found the required information straight away so didn't need to drill down into the site, so you could argue sites with a higher bounce rate are doing a better job...

I really hope Google are smarter than that, then again it wouldn't surprise me at this point!
8:23 pm on June 5, 2014 (gmt 0)

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[smithsonianmag.com ]
"A UCLA engineer hoping to make medical diagnoses a snap turns a smartphone into a powerful microscope with new software, a few LEDs and a test chamber made by a 3-D printer. (Brinson + Banks)"
"lens-free digital microscope ($40)"
"home fertility testing. One of his devices, a lens-free 3-D video microscope, recently mapped the never-before-seen helical swimming patterns of sperm cells"

If you read the quoted Smithsonian article, Google will soon have access to medical, chemical, and other analysis test results around the world, assuming they can create some "Google maps" like app to get access to it.
Google Earth's (not Google maps) "traffic layer" does show many, many, car's actual speeds and locations (on major highways) in almost real time. Google maps only shows traffic delays and normal speeds. When I told a friend about this, who commutes a long way to work, he immediately deleted Google maps from his smart phone!
9:13 pm on June 5, 2014 (gmt 0)

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When I first read about the new Chromebooks, with only a cloudOS to deliver raw data in real time as you use your device, it occurred to me that there needs to be some more discussion about privacy.

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