Google Maps is one of the most popular navigation apps in the world, and it’s constantly getting better. Today, Google announced a number of new AI-powered features for Maps that will help users plan and navigate trips, make sustainable choices, and get quick inspiration for things to do.
Google Maps Immersive View comes to Dublin
If you live in Amsterdam, Barcelona, Dublin, Florence, Las Vegas, London, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, Paris, San Francisco, San Jose, Seattle, Tokyo or Venice, then you’re in luck. Starting this week, Google is introducing Immersive View for routes in these cities so that you can see a 3D view of where you’re going. It’ll show you simulated traffic and weather conditions too over time so that you can better plan your day with a visual aid.
Google Lens in Maps gets extended
Starting this week, Google Lens in Maps will come to 50 more cities across the world. How it works is you point your phone at your surroundings to quickly orient yourself and find nearby landmarks and other useful places, like coffee shops or ATMs. It’s coming to Austin, Las Vegas, Rome, São Paulo and Taipei this week, among other cities.
More Electric Vehicle information
If you’re an EV driver in Ireland, then you’ll probably know all about charging anxiety. It’s hard to know where exactly you’ll be able to charge on a trip, and while the situation is certainly getting better, it’s far from ideal. Cars that have Google built-in, starting this week, will start showing you chargers on your route and if they’re compatible with your specific car. In the U.S. for example, Google also notes that 25% of EV charging stations are down at any given time, and Google will alert you to that fact as well.
Get inspired for things to do
Google is introducing a new way for users to find inspiration of things to do while on their trip.
When users search for specific things like (Google gave us these examples) “animal latte art” or “pumpkin patch with my dog,” they will get photo-first results of what they are looking for. These results are based on the analysis of billions of photos shared by the Google Maps community, using AI and advanced image recognition models. With this visual list of places, users can discover new spots that match exactly what they are looking for. They can simply scroll through the results, tap on a photo to learn more and navigate right there. This feature is rolling out first on Google Maps in France, Germany, Japan, the UK, and the US this week, and will expand to more countries in the future.
Google also gave an example of when you have a free weekend and are looking for something to do, users will soon see better-organized search results to get ideas. For example, if a user is in Tokyo, they could search for “things to do” to see thematic place suggestions like “anime,” “cherry blossoms,” or “art exhibitions.” They can tap on the places that interest them to learn more, and even save the options to a list if they want to check them out later. Thematic results will be coming to devices over the coming weeks.