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Where am I? Google has the solution!

It used to be easy: if you called someone, you knew immediately where they were, namely at home - probably even near the telephone socket. Then came cell phones, and since then many conversations have started with the now classic “Where are you now?”.

However, the answer to the question “Where am I?” Is not always answered quickly: Unfamiliar city, unknown area, just not paying attention - the orientation is already there. But you have several options for sharing your current location with others.

Google Maps: The flexible solution

To spontaneously share your location with others, you can Google Maps (Android ǀ iOS). The Maps app is part of Android, so you usually already have it installed. iOS users can also use the function, but must first download the app.

If you are logged into the system with your Google account, you can start right away. In the Menu bar do you find the point "Location approval"that you select.

Share location with individual people

You certainly don't want to share your current location with everyone around the clock. So you can make a few more settings:

  • Choose the people from your contacts who are allowed to view your location or location history. Or generate a link to your location tracking, which you then send.
  • Hire how long you want to share the location. From 15 minutes to a few hours up to three days you can determine this fairly flexibly.
  • Alternatively, you select the location toDeactivation is released. You should remember that, however; not that you permanently share your whereabouts with others, although you may only wanted to do this briefly once.

Tip: You can also find your location via Google Maps directly inWhatsappshare: via the paper clip next to the text field in the chat.

Google users: where am I?

A small weak point is: If you share your location via a generated and sent link, anyone who has received the link can theoretically forward it - and third parties can also track your current location. However, there is one special feature when you have your Location with other Google users share.

In this case, you not only see the users' avatars on the map, you also don't have to distribute a publicly viewable link. Google users are invited in a more or less personalized way and never see a link. You can also block Google users if you don't want to have anything to do with them.

Temporary approval from Google

Interesting for the passing on of links: These are provided with the selected time window. However, it does not start as soon as the link is used, but when it is generated.

So if you set an hour, but the recipient only opens the link after half an hour, he can only track the location for half an hour.

Overall, sharing your own location is via Google Maps one of the most straightforward solutions in this area, especially for users who use Google services anyway.

The big advantage of the maps variant is that you can temporarily share your whereabouts with anyone without hesitation.

Location as a battery killer?

What one should not ignore, however: The Location sharing can negatively affect the battery lifelike any app that requires a GPS connection.

But if you have activated the Google location history anyway, you won't notice anything in terms of the battery, because the release uses the location history. Location sharing works in the same way on Android and iOS, there is nothing to consider here.

Surveillance vs. Prevention: Trustworthy Contacts

The location sharing in the Google Maps is very practical, because you can give friends or acquaintances access to your own location without an additional app. That is enough in many cases.

But also the special app from Google Trustworthy contacts (Android ǀ iOS) can be worth a download, maybe or especially for parents. If these are entered as trustworthy contacts on the child's smartphone, they can query the current location at any time to check whether everything is okay.

If the parents send a request, the child can click within a time window of 5 minutes to indicate that everything is OK.

In case of emergancy and thus in the event of non-response the location is released - if necessary the last one when the battery is empty or the smartphone is off. When deployed, the child also has the security that the location cannot be viewed permanently and without notification.

It works without Google: Glympse

Are you looking for a solution away from Google? There are different apps that you can use to share your location via GPS: One is Glympse (Android ǀ iOS). The practical thing here: You have to install the app to share your location - but the location can be accessed via any device with an Internet connection.

With Glympse, too, you set how long your location is shared and determine who receives this information.

Conclusion: where am I right now? Here I am!

  • You can use Google Maps to share your current location with individual people for a specific time slot.
  • With the Trustworthy Contacts app, certain contacts can send a request to your smartphone beforehand and after a certain waiting time they will be informed of your location.
  • If you don't want to give Google more information about you on a silver platter, try another app, like Glympse.

Photo: © Shutterstock / DANIEL CONSTANTE

Lisa used to explain the latest gadgets to her little brothers. Not only does she know a lot technically, she also knows where the best pizza can be found in Hamburg.