And you believe them, why exactly? Because they say so?
I guess thats part of it but. But also because they haven't given me a good reason not to believe them unlike everyone else. Its a lesser of N evils thing in my mind and looking ANY tech company, I rate Google up there as the most trustworthy. Of course things could change but right now we have:
Google provides free software, e-books, search engines, etc., as its bait. And based upon your slavish fanboi gushing, you've fallen for it hook, line, and sinker...
I'm not trying to be a "fanboi" and I'm still confused. You've listed what I gain but what exactly have I lost? My privacy? Don't I already lose that to Facebook and Apple? My point still stands.
you think they collect this data just to sit in some database? they sell it to third parties to sell you ads, metrics and other marketing purposes
Really? Please point me to one piece of solid evidence to that effect. If you can I'll run and delete my Google accounts right now. They sell ads so sure, they probably target ads with some model made from aggregate location data from lots of users but I have never found anything to suggest that they sell, or would ever sell this data to third parties. There is just too much for them to lose. They built their brand on the respect of the tech industry. Why would they ever throw that away? It would be stupid.
Google is also keeping all of the money for itself, and is not passing any of it on to the users who supplied the data. If your smartphone paid you cash for every day you allow them to track your data, people would not be objecting so loudly.
Also, that smart phone is likely loaded with crapware that is difficult or impossible to uninstall. The manufacturer/carrier is making money from that and you can bet your bottom dollar that the carriers are tracking you for network-planning and what-not but you'll never be able to opt-out of that. The difference with all this stuff comes down to the way its implemented. *IF* its done in a way to secure your privacy (e.g. by purposely randomising your location within a certain distance and not storing any personally identifiable information) then it adds value to YOU. It can give you better results in searches and a better user experience. The problem is when companies start collecting it to their advantage without making it available to others. Apple seems to have secretive plans for their iPhone location data and Facebook have a history of not sharing. Out of the three, I'm glad my data is with Google. At least they tell me what they record and give me the option to delete it or opt out.
Those who can't write, write manuals.