Google is rolling out new updates for Maps that are part of its plan to make the navigation app more immersive and intuitive for users, the company announced today at its event in Paris.
Most notably, the company announced the rollout of Immersive View starting today in London, Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco, and Tokyo. Immersive View, which Google first announced at I/O in May 2022, is designed to help you plan ahead and better understand a city before you visit it. The company plans to launch Immersive View in more cities including Amsterdam, Dublin, Florence and Venice in the coming months.
The feature merges billions of Street View and aerial images to create a digital model of the world. It also overlays information on top of the digital model, such as details about a location’s weather, traffic, and attendance. For example, let’s say you are planning to visit the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam and want to get an idea before you go. You can use Immersive View to virtually fly over the building to get a better idea of what it looks like and where the entrances are. You can also see what the area looks like at different times of the day and what the weather will be like. Immersive View can also show you nearby restaurants and let you look inside to see if they would be a great place for you.
“To create these realistic scenes, we use Neural Radiation Fields (NeRF), an advanced AI technique, which transforms ordinary images into 3D representations,” Google explained in a blog post. “With NeRF, we can accurately recreate the full context of a place, including its lighting, material texture and background. All of this lets you see if the dim lighting of a bar is the right atmosphere for a date or if the sight of a cafe makes it the perfect spot for lunch with friends.
The company also announced that a new feature called “Visible Directions” will be rolling out globally to Android and iOS in the coming months. This feature allows you to follow your route directly from your route overview or from the lock screen. Users will see updated ETAs and where to make your next turn. If you decide to take another route, the app will automatically update your route. Google notes that previously this information was only visible by unlocking your phone, opening the app and using full navigation mode. At-a-glance directions can be used whenever you use the app, whether you’re walking, cycling, or taking public transit.
Google also announced that it is expanding search with Live View to more locations in Europe in the coming months, including Barcelona, Madrid and Dublin. The search function with live view lets you use your camera to find essential places like shops, ATMs and restaurants when you’re on the go. Suppose you are in an unfamiliar location and want to find the nearest ATM, you can lift your camera and search to instantly see ATMs in the area. Google recently launched search with Live View in London, Los Angeles, New York, Paris, San Francisco and Tokyo.
Additionally, the company’s Indoor Live View feature is expanding to more than 1,000 new airports, stations and shopping malls in cities around the world, including London, Paris, Berlin, Madrid, Barcelona, Prague, Frankfurt, Tokyo, Sydney, Melbourne, Sao Paulo. , Singapore and Taipei in the coming months. The Indoor Live View feature, which first launched in 2021, uses AR-powered arrows to point you in the right direction so you can quickly find restrooms, lounges, taxi ranks, car rentals, and more. nearest cars and more.
Finally, Google is adding new features for electric vehicles integrating Google Maps. Users will soon be able to find stations equipped with chargers of 150 kilowatts or more. The maps will also show users when places like a supermarket have on-site charging stations. Additionally, Maps will start suggesting the best stop based on key factors, such as current traffic, your charge level, and the expected energy for any trip that requires a charge stop. Google says all of these new EV features will start rolling out in the coming months.
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