Google Suspends Real-Time Traffic Updates in Palestine

Google has ceased real-time traffic updates for Palestine in response to a request from the Israeli army, a move that has been followed by Apple, which has also halted traffic updates in its Maps application.

This change affects both Google Maps and the Waze application. Google has affirmed that this decision was made to consider the safety of local communities in light of the evolving situation in the region. However, users can still access expected routes and arrival areas based on current traffic conditions.

In 2022, Google took a similar action during the Russo-Ukrainian War by halting traffic updates in Ukraine due to applications being used to track military movements.

The situation in Palestine continues to escalate with the ongoing Israeli offensive against Hamas. Estimates indicate that over 5000 Palestinians have been killed since October 7th, with approximately 15273 others injured in Gaza since the start of the Israeli military response.

This change in traffic updates on Google Maps and the Waze application comes ahead of the anticipated Israeli ground invasion of the Gaza Strip, which could impact traffic flow significantly.

The company has removed real-time congestion data at the request of the Israeli army to prevent the leakage of information regarding military movements.

Traffic updates on Google Maps operate by collecting data from smartphones with the application installed. This data is used to track the location and speed of vehicles on the roads. Users with the application can no longer see real-time traffic congestion status. However, they can still receive estimated arrival times based on current conditions.

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