As much as we hate tech companies tracking our every move, Google Maps doesn’t work if you don’t share your location with Google. Most people, however, don’t even worry about the amount of data they share with Google Maps. Those that do mind have ways to limit the tracking with Google’s privacy-related features. You can use incognito mode to unlink Maps activity from your main Google account, and you can erase your Maps history if you so desire. But if you want to take advantage of Ikea’s brilliant marketing campaign, you’ll want to have your Google Maps Timeline turned on and recording your trips to the store.
Ikea has decided to turn the length of your trip to a store into instant savings. The promotion, however, is only running in Dubai, but it’s interesting nonetheless. As you can see in the image below, a two-hour trip adds up to a free “Billy” bookcase, while a five-minute trip will net you free food at the store.
The promo is called “Buy With Your Time,” Engadget reports, and it’s quite simple to use. Ikea staff will look at your Google Maps Timeline to determine the length of your trip, and the time is turned into savings.
It’s unclear whether this pilot program will be rolled out to other countries. Maybe the Swedish furniture maker is simply trying to increase sales in the region by essentially giving customers free furniture for driving to its retail stores. But it’s still a great marketing promotion from Ikea, and it wouldn’t be possible without an app like Google Maps to track your every move.
Also, before you think about attempting to cheat the system by pretending your house is further away than it really is, you might want to check the promo’s fine print: You’ll have to verify your address before taking advantage of any Maps-based discounts.