Big Brother Is Watching You: Its Name Is Googlehttp://www.fool.com/investing/general/2014/01/21/big-brother-is-watching-you-only-its-name-is-googl.aspx Tamara Walsh
January 21, 2014
Unless you live under a rock, you've heard that Google (NASDAQ: GOOG) is buying connected device maker Nest for $3.2 billion. However, what you might not know is how Google could use Nest's products in the future to track your every move. The search giant, after all, is known for its proficiency in collecting and mining user data. And what better way of doing this than through in-home devices such as Nest's smart thermostat or smoke detector?
Acquiring Nest gives Google an entry into the burgeoning "Internet of Things" -- a market that's expected to be worth $14.4 trillion over the next decade, according to Cisco. If you're not yet familiar with the term, it refers to the growing network of machines, appliances, and everyday objects, which are being connected and controlled through the Web today.
Tracking how you live
In fact, using location services Google knows the precise position of every Android-user's WiFi enabled device. That's especially important, considering ABI Research estimates that a whopping 798 million people use Android-based mobile devices today. Of course, the same goes for Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL), which currently counts around 294 million people as iOS users today, according to similar research. While Google and Apple say they don't share such data with outside companies, a new industry is emerging today with the sole purpose of capitalizing on such information.
Big brother's nosey siblings