Google Maps has firmly established itself as the de-facto standard when it comes to navigation apps. So it's no surprise that Google wants to grow its audience even more. In what might be the biggest yearly update the app has seen, Google is set to roll out a host of new features and improvements. The company listed out some of the upcoming features in a blog post on its website.
Indoor navigation with Live View
Live View will now allow you to navigate indoors in places such as airports and train stations. It will use AR cues in conjunction with technology that Google calls global localisation. It can then relay real-time information using your phone's camera, giving you on-screen cues as to where you should head next.
This feature will be rolled out on both iOS and Android and will go live in a number of malls in the US. Then in the coming months, Google will add Tokyo and Zurich to that list before rolling the feature slowly to more cities.
Real-time weather and air quality updates
Google will add a new weather layer to the maps app that will let you quickly see current and forecasted temperatures for your area. There is also an air quality layer that shows you the condition of the air around you. The weather layer will launch globally while the air quality layer will roll out to Australia, India and the US first.
A new routing model for eco-friendly navigation
With help from the US Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Lab, Google is working on a new routing model that will show optimised low-fuel consumption routes for your travel based on road incline and traffic congestion.
This feature will go live in the US first but Google says a global expansion is on the way.
Low emission zone alerts will tell drivers when they are navigating through one of these zones including telling you whether your vehicle is allowed in the area and letting you choose and an alternate mode of transportation. This feature will go live in Germany, the Netherlands, France, Spain and the UK with more countries added later.
Google will also expand on this feature to deliver a comprehensive list of sustainable transportation options and routes for your travel. You can even see an estimated time based on your current vehicle. This will roll out globally in the coming months.
Google is adding the option to view information like delivery providers, delivery windows, fees and order minimums to business profiles on Maps and search. This will allow you to shop for what you need in one convenient place. This will go live on mobile search first and then be rolled out to Maps in the future. It is only available in the US at launch.