Google Maps features are quickly enabled, given a peek here

Google always seems to be working on new features for various services, including Google Maps. Today, Zen Wang posted multiple new features on the map on Twitter – here’s a breakdown.

The tweets in this series detail a number of changes to Google Maps. Some are quite small, but others can have quite a big impact on usability. Perhaps one that many passengers will easily find – you know, once life returns to normal – is a “first mile” option for connecting with public transit.

Many passengers have a short trip to go to the nearest bus, subway, or train station. With this new map filter, Google lets users choose and choose what type of transport to use for their “first mile” of daily commute. Technically, these can probably also be used for “last miles”. Options included include car, bike, rickshaw, motorcycle or ride sharing services like Uber or Lift.

Google Maps is working on route options including “Connections to Public Transit”, such as:

– Car + Transit
– Bicycle + transit
– Autorickshaw
– Ride service
– Motorcycle + Transit

– Jane Manchun Wang (@Ongmajane) June 20, 2020

On Uber’s note, Google Maps is preparing to give a better insight into ride fares, at least through Uber. This will allow Google Maps to link to a ride-sharing service and share the user’s route, providing instant and accurate ride fares within Google Maps. Most likely, it is also available for other travel sharing platforms. In a related change, the maps are clearly working for a more stringent integration for the San Francisco bike sharing service “Bay Wheels”.

There are several UI changes that Google is preparing to create on the map. For one, the search bar at the top of the app will soon be rounded up with a user profile picture on the right and a Google Maps logo on the far left. It changes a little, but it looks really great! There are some changes to the “Location” card that include showing common words in reviews for that location as shown below.

Finally, some good news for iOS users. Google is working to add the “OK Google” hotword feature to Maps’ iOS app. This will trigger Google Assistant when using the Maps app and override the “Hey Siri” hotword commonly found on the iPhone.

Google Maps for iOS is working on “OK Google” which overrides “Hey Siri” while navigating

– Jane Manchun Wang (@Ongmajane) June 20, 2020

It’s not clear when these features will be released publicly, but they do seem like welcome improvements to the platform.

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