Google will let you delete the last 15 minutes of your search history

·Contributing Writer
·2-min read
Google search history activity deletion option

At Google's I/O event, the company announced some more privacy features, including one that will let you quickly wipe your most recent searches. When you tap your profile icon, you'll see an option that lets you delete the last 15 minutes of your search history. That might come in handy when your partner walks in while you're trying to find a gift for them.

Elsewhere, Google Photos will have a password-protected Locked Folder. It'll let you keep some photos hidden away when you want to show a friend a picture or let them scroll through an album on your phone. Images in the Locked Folder won't pop up on the grid or in your shared albums. The feature will debut on Google Pixel phones before rolling out to more Android devices later this year.

In Maps, when you view places you've visited in your Timeline, you'll see a reminder that you have the location history option switched on. You'll be able to turn it off directly from Timeline.

Meanwhile, Android 12 has privacy protection baked into the OS with Android Private Compute Core. Google says this will allow it to "introduce new technologies that are private by design, allowing us to keep your personal information safe, private and local to your phone." The company says Private Compute Core enables features including Live Caption, Now Playing and Smart Reply, because the audio and language processing required for those takes place entirely on your device.

Android 12 camera and microphone usage indicator
Android 12 camera and microphone usage indicator

Android 12 will have a privacy dashboard that includes a timeline showing when apps used your microphone, camera or location info. Indicators show when your mic or camera are being used. You'll be able to to disable access to those with simple toggle options. Additionally, you'll be able to share approximate locations with apps rather than your exact position.

Google also announced an update for Chrome's built-in password manager. When the company suspects that one of your passwords has been compromised, Google Assistant will help you change it.