A study by US-based Vanderbilt University professor has affirmed the long-standing notion of Google being a data hog. The study that shows how much data Google is collecting about consumers throws some scary results.
Even when not used, Android phones send information to Google around 40 times per hour. iPhones, on the contrary, send information to Apple’s servers just four times in the same conditions.
During normal use, that total rises to 90 information requests per hour for Android phones compared to 18 for iPhones.
Interestingly Google even collects more data from iPhone users than Apple itself does. This, however, only works when the phone is used. In idle mode iPhones very rarely communicate with Google’s servers.
The study analysed how often Android phones and iPhones send information to Google and Apple servers during a 24-hour period, distinguishing between the amount of data collected in idle mode and during normal use.
Google largely uses its advertisement analytics tools to collect user data. The study argues that Google also has the ability to associate anonymous data collected through passive means, i.e. its analytics tools, with the personal information of the user.
Google, however, has challenged the findings, calling them “wildly misleading” and suggesting the author of the study had a conflict of interest because he served as a witness against Google in a copyright case between the company and Oracle.
Google has been criticised repeatedly for its aggressive data collection policy. An Associated Press Investigation this month revealed that Google records your movements even when you explicitly tell it not to.Using Google services on Android devices and iPhones allows the company to record your whereabouts as you go about your day, even if you've used privacy settings that are supposed to prevent it from doing so, the AP report said.