It's also a solid choice for them to hedge against antitrust claims, if they can point to having just added them to their browser, regardless of the fact that Google is the default and they do not present a choice screen like Microsoft had to in the EU.
Good. 4 is a good number. It's on the low end of the number range people think of as "enough choice."
At its simplest, in the West we have a thing for threes. Three bits of God, three little pigs, three branches of government (in the USA at least), "things come in threes", three books/movies in a series (a trilogy), stories that have a "beginning/middle/end".
Bottom line, the West tends toward organizing and thinking of things in threes. Some might even be superstitious about threes (perhaps a Pythagorean influence).
In China the number 4 plays a similar role. I don't know much about 'numerology' in China, save to say that recently the number 4 (which apparently sounds like 'death' in Chinese) has been considered bad luck. Here's a better explanation than I could give: https://www.quora.com/In-Chinese-culture-why-is-the-number-4...
To add a complication, Chinese tends to use the US convention (with the ground floor being floor 1), while the English convention is the British one (with the ground floor being floor 0).
By happy coincidence, then, the 13th floor is also 十四樓, ie the 14th floor, so you only need to skip one floor, rather than two. That explains why HK skyscrapers are so high.
Say, frozen chicken, napkins, instant noodles, paper cups, etc. In some cases there is only 1 option offered, sometimes 2, rarely are there ever more than 4 options offered at Costco for a single type of item. When you trust that you are being offered the best choice or a top choice, well, we know what happens at Costco. People buy pallets in that warehouse.
Effectively, Costco shoppers are people who already have chosen, "the cheapest fairly good quality option."
Costco is the "I'm feeling lucky" button.
What percentage of Chrome users consented to the data collection? (Is consent even required?)
Does the data represent all Chrome users or only those who have consented?
Unwillingly consented, that's the vast majority of Chrome Sync users. Unless you enable the end-to-end-encryption (for which they require a second passphrase, so probably less than 0.1% actually use that), they will use your data for ad profiling etc.. Yes, that is on page 1312 of the Chrome Sync privacy statement. (They're only required to write it into there, if they do it, so it is quite certain that they didn't just want the bad PR for nothing.)
Is consent required? Assuming they actually do collect this data from their Chrome Sync data or through similar personally identifiable ways, consent would be required in many jurisdictions, especially the EU.
However, if they cared enough, it would be possible for them to collect this particular data point without personal identification.
You could for example create a UUID per installation that's only associated with this one data point.
Or you could have a time-based solution where each Chrome instance goes out to "vote" for their default search engine e.g. every 4 weeks. If you then look at the statistics on a weekly basis, you can just take these values times 4 to even roughly correct numbers. It's certainly going to be representative enough, you don't need every browser instance to have their vote in every week's statistic.
These metrics are from UMA stats. They are collected from everyone who ticks the box to report stats when installing Chrome.
They only get histograms of counts of visits to search engines, not the entire URL, and not search engines or other sites not in the list of things they track (which is at the bottom of the file).
and other chrome-urls
These can provide useful data for me but not sure why I would want send the data to Google.
Those actions are how I prefer to approach the problem.
However as far as I can tell, those are not actions Google wants to take. They have their own preferred approach.
It is also possible there are some users who have no idea why pages are slow to load.
Those groups might want to send usage data to Google.
However I am not in either group. I dislike the web advertising business that Google depends on and therefore must nourish and support.
As such, there is no reason I can think of why I would want to send data to Google.
Also, I have not checked but I wonder if Google is restricted in how they can use the collected diagnostic data. Are they prohibited from using it for the purposes of selling advertising?
So if Chrome's ever made a UI change you disagreed with, then you're in a group that would have benefitted from sending Google usage data.
In terms of the restrictions on usage data, see https://www.google.com/chrome/privacy/whitepaper.html#usages... .
I care about command line programs, less-interactive and non-interactive use. Truly, the best interface is no interface.
The whitepaper.html appears to explain how usage data is utilised in ways that help Chrome improve but does not appear to contain any restrictions on use of the data to help further Google's ad sales business, whether directly or indirectly.
It is the business model that I do not wish to support.
Producing software such as Chrome is just something the company is doing in the course of selling advertising and collecting maximal amounts of data from users, whether the data is anonymised or not.
They have slimmed it down to only a few pages and now have very simplified statements.
Obviously every statement is now very carefully worded...
Reminds me of the sort of advantage Facebook had from its VPN app to identify competitors early to kill/acquire them.
There's a lot to unpack in that statement... Is there any recent analysis on the usage stats that chrome is reporting back that someone could point to?
Isn't it well known that Google scoops up web history from the browser or have they stopped doing/never done this? In the latter case any pointers would be appreciated.
Source: I work in education - even in a highly educated area in a developed EU country, young and old alike think like this.
A default open browser history synced across devices seems like exactly the sort of thing that would show that DDG has increased its market share.
Not only is Google's indexing infrastructure not that fast, but they deliberately don't do that because some poorly designed sites have passwords or unique keys in the URL that should not be used to retrieve content for the public search index.