Google Maps Pulls Calorie-Counting Feature After Criticism

18 October, 2017, 00:58 | Author: Julio Duncan
  • 171017_TECH_googleMiniCupcakes

Said feature informed to give users a general estimation of how many calories got burned during walks, which is a rather standard feature of many a fitness-oriented apps like Samsung Health, MyFitnessPal, and Endomondo. A number of people lambasted the feature on Twitter, claiming it would "shame" and even "trigger" those with eating disorders.

BuzzFeed News' Katie Notopoulos documented a new, short-lived Google Maps feature that would suggest walking to a given close-by destination while telling you how many calories the average human would burn doing so.

Google did not immediately respond to PCMag's request for comment, but told TechCrunch that it's removing the feature "based on strong user feedback".

Others noted, however, that other mapping apps have long had similar features (though not with the whole cupcake aspect). "She cited the National Association of Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders, writing that "[as] many as 30 million people in the USA are estimated to have an eating disorder". Then it converts those calories into mini cupcakes. So, if you went to get directions for a 2.2-mile journey, Google would tell you that walking the route "burns around 199 calories - that's nearly 2 mini cupcakes!".


On Monday night, Google pulled the feature, which it said was an experiment on its iOS app.

But that's exactly what's just happened with an update to the iPhone version of Google Maps. The more you use the Google app, the better it gets.

Another criticism was that users were not given the option to turn off the feature. "Now you can visit these places-along with many other planets and moons-in Google Maps right from your computer".

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