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Google May Offer Rewards For "Deep" Tracking Users

Sources have informed Engadget that Google is gearing up to launch a new mobile service that compensates users if they allow the company to monitor their mobile behavior. Internally, the project is referred to as "Mobile Meter," and will monitor both app usage and browsing habits, and send that data back to Google. The company plans to offer this service to both Android and Apple iOS device owners.

According to the report, this monitoring will be "deeper" than the passive method Google already uses on Android. This program will also be completely voluntary: participants will be required to opt in before joining. Sources aren't sure what app will be offered and web metrics Google intends to track with Mobile Meter. Naturally, Google refuses to comment on rumors and speculations.

Sources claim that Google intends to anonymize all of the information it collects from the participants to avoid any privacy issues. The company is presumably launching this program to evaluate the different habits of Android and iOS device owners, and to get a better insight on Apple's iOS ecosystem. So far there's no word on when this program will launch, if at all.

Market researcher Neilson reportedly does something similar on Android with this app listed on Google Play. "When you download the Nielsen Mobile App, you'll not only be contributing to our valuable research on mobile trends, but you will also earn monthly points that you can convert into rewards of your choice. The app runs silently in the background and does not affect battery life," reads the listing.

The software supposedly measures the normal activity of the user's phone, tablet or other mobile device. The listing indicates that users can earn points worth up to $50 per year that can be spent on the Neilson Mobile Rewards online shop. Participants can purchase Amazon gift cards, DVD players, HDTVs and more.

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  • nevilence
    Hell I do nothing private enough on my phone to not want someone tracking it, if I can be rewarded for just using my phone, bring it on. And before I get flammed, I have specified that I, being me personally, dont mind, if you dont like it, dont jump on board.
    Reply
  • stevejnb
    11727767 said:
    Hell I do nothing private enough on my phone to not want someone tracking it, if I can be rewarded for just using my phone, bring it on. And before I get flammed, I have specified that I, being me personally, dont mind, if you dont like it, dont jump on board.

    Good way to look at it. A *lot* of people are OK with just about any reasonable level of data mining/surveillance. As long as there is an option to opt out, we're pretty much all good
    Reply
  • nevilence
    Exactly, and this goes the extra step of being opt in to begin with, so regular peeps have little to worry about.
    Reply
  • abbadon_34
    sounds great for old phones and tabs sitting in a drawer but still have wifi
    Reply
  • mouse24
    "Up to 50 dollars per YEAR"

    Gonna take you a long time to buy anything with that type of income...
    Reply
  • shortbus25
    32" HDTV 60000 points = 5 years worth of tracking!!!
    Reply
  • icemunk
    $50 worth of "points" which likely over price the items they sell by quite a bit. So, after factoring in inflation amounts, it's probably more like $20-$25.
    Reply
  • DRosencraft
    There are a lot of nerdy political science and social science questions to be had here. It would be interesting to see how many people sign up for this. Or, if the government offered you a tax credit for it, would you let the NSA monitor your phone, tablet, computer?
    Reply
  • m32
    They want to see my pr0n sites (tomshardware, engadget, theverge, .....hub and etc.) Come on!
    Reply
  • velocityg4
    They should offer 10% of the Adwords click through fee. I can guarantee my ad clicking would increase 1000 fold. Googles profits would skyrocket.
    Reply