Google Maps is becoming smarter with every new update, and the shiny new makeover the app received back in November is a testament to that. Over the coming months, we’re going to see Google Maps updated with new features that will make travelling in the real world a little bit less of a pain.
Not all updates are positive of course – Google had to withdraw its calorie burning counter – but hopefully, the upcoming changes will be better received.
Here are all the new features Google Maps has announced so far:
Detailed transit information
Ever been in a new city and struggled to get around on the local transport network? Google Maps is going to make that easier for you. Rolling out in the next few weeks and months, Google Maps will soon be able to give you live updates when you’re in transit. It will be able to tell you how many stops you have left to go, when you’re approaching your stop, as well as providing you with interactive real-time notifications. Whether this will work on the London underground before 4G arrives below ground, we’ll just have to see, however, it would be good for commuters who want live updates on train times.
Restaurant wait times
I once spent two hours queuing to get into a French restaurant in Paris – if only this feature was available then. The feature, currently on Google Search, shows estimated restaurant wait times meaning you can forget about queuing and schedule the best time to dine. The information will be available for over a million restaurants around the world. However, there’s no estimated wait time for the feature’s arrival in the Google Maps app. The company highlights that supermarkets and grocery stores will be the next to get estimated wait times.
Air quality layers
Google Maps could soon be implementing layers that highlight air quality levels in cities around the world. The feature, which was first tested and subsequently released in California, is an air quality map that shows users concentration levels of different dangerous particles on city roads. If you zoom into the map, you will be able to see the pockets where pollution collects, so it’s very detailed. Google hopes to roll out the feature to other cities in the future.
Find your parked car
Goog, where’s my car? Not a new feature per se but for those that don’t already know, since April, Google Maps has been able to tell you where exactly you’ve parked your car. If you’ve ever parked your car in an enormous parking lot and then wandered around aimlessly trying to find it, you’ll know how much of a lifesaver this feature will be. If you have your phone connected via Bluetooth, Google Maps will automatically tag the parked location. If that’s not enough detail, you can add notes and pictures so you know what exact level and row you parked your car on.