Google shutting down Trusted Contacts location sharing app in December

Google announced Trusted Contacts at the end of 2016 as location sharing tailored for family and friends. After nearly four years, a shutdown of Trusted Contacts, in favor of parallel functionality in Google Maps, was announced today.

Trusted Contacts was a more focused take on location sharing that did not have any social elements to it. Available on Android and iOS, there’s a simple list of trusted people’s recent activity and device battery status.

You can share your location with others “if you feel unsafe or want somebody to watch out for you.” Meanwhile, others are able to request your location in case of emergency. The key difference with Trusted Contacts was its opt-out model: “If somebody asks for your location and you don’t respond, your location is automatically shared.”

It later added customized timeouts and permanent location sharing. There’s a degree of integration with the broader Google Contacts service, and could be managed online.

Google today informed existing users that “Trusted Contacts won’t be supported after December 1, 2020.”

If the app is installed on your device, you can continue to use it until then. To share your location with others, try Location Sharing in Google Maps. Set up Location Sharing

The company’s recommended Trusted Contacts replacement following the shutdown is Location Sharing in Google Maps. Trusted Contacts has not seen an update in quite some time, while the Maps capability powers other features like Safety check and Emergency sharing on Pixel devices. There’s also neat integration with Live View AR directions.

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