How to Access and Use Google’s “My Activity” Feature

One of the biggest things that still plagues Google today is its users’ level of trust in privacy. As a data company, they rely on collecting user information to help them create better products and services. It’s a double-edged sword because it’s hard to create a personalized experience without giving up some of your user data. It is said that Google knows too much about you; however, users today have more control over their data than ever before.

With the introduction of Google’s My Activity feature, users can have more power over their search history and account data settings. One of the biggest additions is to automatically delete your Google search history after a certain number of months by default. Before that, you could potentially have years of search history from old devices registered to your account and not know otherwise. Read on to learn everything you need to know about the must-have My Activity feature.


How to access the “My activity” feature from the Google app

There are different ways to find the “My Activity” feature on Android; however, accessing these settings is relatively easy, whichever method you choose. You can quickly get to your main Google Account page by doing the following:

  1. Open the google app on your device, then tap your profile icon in the top-right corner.
  2. Under your selected account, tap Manage your Google account.
  3. Press the Data Privacy tongue.
  4. Scroll to History settings section and press My activity.

You can also find your Google Account main page from the system settings menu. If you have a current Pixel or Samsung device, you can go to Settings → Google. This location may differ slightly depending on the device manufacturer or Android version, so you may need to do a quick search to find it.

How to Access the “My Activity” Feature from Your Web Browser

You can also always choose to open the “My Activity” feature directly in your favorite web browser. You can do this on a computer and use the desktop version, or you can use your phone and add an icon shortcut to your home screen for easy access. To start on your Android device, you can do the following:

  1. Visit the My activity web page on your device, which should automatically launch in your default browser (copy and paste as needed).
  2. Open your browser settings (three-dot menu in most cases), then tap Add to home screen (Chrome or other supported browsers) to create a shortcut.
  3. Faucet To add, then press Add to home screen (or drag and drop the icon) to end here.

If you use Google Assistant, you can also say or type “my activity” to go directly to the main web app in your default browser.


How to Use My Activity to Manage Your Google Account History

Now that you can access the “My Activity” feature, it’s time to start managing your Google Account history. This page consists of three main sections called Web & App Activity, Location History, and YouTube History. You should go through them one by one and select the preferences that best suit your account needs. We’ll break down each section of Activity Controls for you below:

Web and app activity

In the “Web & app activity” section, you’ll find settings related to your web and app search history. Google recommends using this setting to improve your user experience. This can give you faster search results and improve recommendations for many Google services. Saving your account history can also be useful in certain situations. For example, imagine you searched for something last week but forgot what it was – you can quickly view your search history to refresh your memory.

At the same time, many apps rely on Google services to function, which also gives them the ability to track you. It is not only your searches on the web, but your actions within these applications can also be tracked to some extent. This is primarily done to provide you with more relevant advertisements or to improve the app experience. Of course, app data is only recorded in your account history if you enable the optional subset for app activity tracking.

If the feature is enabled and you want to disable it to strengthen the privacy of your Google Account, you can do the following:

  1. Press the To extinguish button to start.
  2. Read the description that appears, then scroll down.
  3. press the Pause button, the setting will be disabled.
  4. Faucet Delete old activity to delete the previous search history from your account.
  5. To select All the time.
  6. Select the products whose activity history you want to clear, then tap Following.
  7. Faucet To delete, and now all selected services will have their activity history removed from your Google Account.
  8. hurry Understood to end here.

You can also manage history data for each Google service or app individually by tapping its icon under the View and delete an activity section. Each can be managed in this way to give you even finer control over them separately.

Each “Activity Controls” section listed in this guide has its own “sub-settings” and auto-delete frequency settings. You can disable everything indefinitely or select a few useful settings here and there. It is also recommended to choose 3 months as the automatic deletion frequency if necessary.

Location History

Since location history tracking is such a sensitive topic for many of us, some might be hesitant to use this feature. You must manually enable location tracking; however, enabling it has some advantages in certain situations. For example, you can get recommendations for places to explore based on your travel history. If you like finding new stores or restaurants that you’ve never heard of before, this might come in handy at home or while traveling abroad.

To add to the whole topic of travel, enabling location history means you can also access a feature called Google Maps Timeline. This allows you to visually see the specific routes you’ve taken when visiting locations on your travels. You can also return to your timeline later and check where you were on a given day, including an estimate of when you visited a specific location.

If you want to enable the Location History feature for your Google account, you can do the following:

  1. Below Location History, press the Light up button.
  2. Read the description that appears, then scroll down.
  3. hurry Light up.
  4. The location history setting is now enabled for your Google account.
  5. Faucet Understood Carry on.

YouTube history

The YouTube History setting saves the videos you’ve watched and keeps track of what you’re looking for. This improves your video recommendations and allows you to pick up videos where you left off. As with any feature that gives you a personalized experience, some user data is required for everything to work properly.

If you value your privacy over the YouTube features mentioned above, you should do the following to remove them:

  1. Below YouTube history, press the To extinguish button.
  2. Read the description that appears, then scroll down if necessary.
  3. hurry Pause to deactivate the YouTube history setting on your Google account.
  4. Faucet Delete old activity.
  5. To select All the time.
  6. Watch the preview of what will be deleted, then press the To delete button to clear your previous YouTube history.
  7. hurry Understood to return to the main page.

Google needs to know certain things about you for a better user experience when using its apps and services. However, you now have more control over how much personal information they can keep tabs on. The “My Activity” feature shows you everything you need to know about what you’ve shared with Google. It’s a welcome addition to help you quickly manage your account data and history on any device.

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