Google lets you get paid for your opinions

Do you have a few seconds to spare waiting on Facebook to update the newsfeed? Maybe a minute between tweets? If you do, Google wants to ask you a few questions.

This week, Google released an iPhone version of Google Opinion Rewards, an app that pays people to answer brief surveys. Once you download the app and sign in with your Google account or Gmail address, you’ll be asked to take a quick survey about yourself.

Google already knows a ton about you. It knows what you like, what you read online, what videos you watch and what products you shop for.

Large and small businesses can use Google’s vast resource of information for market research. Some of that is through surveys from Google Opinion Rewards. The app pays up to $1 per survey. Whenever a new survey is available that Google believes you’ll be interested in and feels you may have some insight, you’ll get a notification within the app. On Android devices, the notification is a trophy icon displayed at the top of the screen on your device. In the iOS app new surveys are displayed as a red notification on the app’s icon.

The first survey I took was about Amazon Alexa devices. I was asked if I use them, if I’d like to see them in cars, and what features would I like to see in a mobile Alexa device, such as opening
the garage door or feeding the dog. Is that coming? We wouldn’t be surprised, would we?

I was paid 28 cents for that survey made of up of three questions. A few days later, I received another notification of a new survey for me. It was from a company wanting some thoughts on a new name for a hotel. Five minutes and three questions later, I picked up another 28 cents.

Google doesn’t release new surveys for people every day. You may get a survey about music, while a friend may get one about desserts. Who knows? You can also enable location information, and you might get a survey about your experience at a store when you get home. OK, that’s a little creepy.

Hundreds of companies ask for and pay for those surveys. Some people complain that they don’t receive surveys as much as they would like. Surveys pay out as much as $1, but most are in the 15 to 25 cent range.

Android users will get their rewards added as credit to the Google Play Store, while iPhone users will have their survey rewards deposited to their PayPal account.

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