Here Technologies: Enhanced mobility is main factor for sharing location data


Location data and platform services provider Here Technologies has unveiled research that demonstrates the evolving attitudes of people toward data privacy and data sharing, with enhanced mobility now the primary factor for information exchanges.

As global privacy views evolve, 90% of people now understand the value associated with sharing their personal and location data, with mapping, navigation, transport and Mobility-as-a-Service (MaaS) providers most likely to benefit from these consumer behavior changes. The study, carried out in partnership with global research agency ESOMAR and research partners BuzzBack Research and Cint, surveyed 10,000 consumers across 10 markets, including the USA, UK, Germany, France, Australia, Brazil and Japan. It compares research of today’s opinions against those of 2018, revealing a growing awareness on the part of the consumer; their understanding of how personal information informs business solutions; and how sharing data can improve their own experiences.

The study found that over two-thirds (70%) of consumers share their location data at least sometimes. People are more willing to share their data if its beneficial to them, such as for increasing safety and security, enabling a service or saving money. Overall willingness to share location data has increased by two percentage points over the past year. The research also indicates that people are more likely to share their location data if they know what it is being used for. This increased willingness to share location data is seen most clearly in the mobility sector. Most consumers globally (76%) are very likely to share their location data with navigation and mapping services, public transport, taxis and ride-hailing services, all of which saw a significant jump in percentage points from the 2018 study. Ride-hailing saw the most significant increase at 10%.

Although consumers see the benefits of sharing their data, the majority (75%) are still concerned about sharing personal information digitally. Results show that acting as a trusted and reputable data collector is key to creating willingness to share both personal and location data, especially for tech-savvy consumers. The study’s insights include:

  • In the USA, the frequency of sharing data is higher than in the rest of the world;
  • The UK is the most advanced of any market regarding value-add and trust schemes, with its consumers sharing their data more frequently than other countries;
  • Germans share their location data a lot less frequently than consumers globally, with overall trust much lower than it is elsewhere;
  • French consumers are both less trusting and less willing to share location data with a variety of services and apps.

“Our study clearly shows that consumer behavior is shifting when it comes to Mobility-as-a-Service,” said Aleksandra Kovacevic, engineering manager of privacy services at Here Technologies. “More consumers are willing to share their location data with a variety of digital services, mapping, navigation and mobility ones in particular, if providers are transparent about their approach to using data. As mobility services and apps continue to proliferate, consumers see how essential their location data is in getting them from A to B. The onus, therefore, is on the businesses and governments to provide the infrastructure necessary to involve consumers as partners in data-first offerings. This will, in turn, create more intuitive services.”

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Adam joined the company in 1994, and has been News Editor of TTT since 2009. In his other role as Circulation Manager, he helped create the original Traffic Technology International distribution list 23 years ago, and has been working on it ever since. Outside of work, he is a keen fisherman, runs a drumming band, and plays an ancient version of cricket.