According to Sundar Pichai, Google is looking into adding unique privacy features for Android that will allow users to sign-in as a guest. It would be great for those times when you want to lend the phone to a family member, or friend. For the most part, since the device is always collecting information about you it sucks when someone else uses your device and it generates results and information that isn't quite so personalized.
Pichai talked about the topic at the D11 conference this morning.
"When we did Chrome, we invested in incognito mode. Now you can do that on the phone [through the Chrome app]."
The idea of incognito mode is to allow you complete anonymity and privacy (as much as they can anyway) while browsing. In other words, Chrome does not save cookies or temporary data files leaving you free to browse without fear of discovery.
"You're completely not signed-in, and we don't know anything about you. We do want more things like that, though. From a security, child safety, etc. standpoint. Chrome OS lets you be a guest user. We're working on things like that on Android."
This is great news indeed, for many reasons.
Of course, the privacy advocates will be the first to point out that it will enable a truly private browsing experience allowing you to opt out of data collection from Google. Many worry that Google is in fact collecting information about what sites they visit, where they go, who they call and even what they do most with their device. Sure, there is a ton of other data that Google can collect, but you get the point.
Also, it would allow multiple users the option to experience a device while still retaining user privacy. For example, in my household I share a tablet with my misses. If I were to browse to, let's say a rather dirty website, she could see the browsing history on the device and what I've been doing with it. I know that Chrome for mobile now allows incognito browsing, but this is still a great example because the stock browser does not take advantage of this feature.
The point being, Google adding more privacy features to Android can't hurt, it can only help. Unfortunately, there's no mention about when these features would be added to the platform, or when they would be available to users.
As always, stay tuned here at Android Headlines for more.
Via All Things D