The Mountain View giant has unveiled a series of updates for Google Maps which promise to transform the way we interact with the popular map service simplifying planning and navigation. This is thanks to power of artificial intelligence which expands the pre-existing features, consolidating the app’s reputation as a reference tool for any travel need.
To enhance the capabilities of Google Maps comes more precise information on electric vehicle charging stations, more specific recommendations on nearby activities and a more in-depth and immersive visualization. All supported by the use of neural radiance fieldswhich allow you to build 3D scenes from 2D images.
Artificial intelligence for EV charging stations
One of the highlights of the announcement is the improvement regarding charging stations for electric vehicles. Thanks to artificial intelligence, users can now access more detailed information. For example, when it was last usedreducing the risk of drivers heading to a non-operational charging station.
Beyond that they can be obtained insights into charging speed (high, medium or low) and on compatibility with your vehicle electric. While these features aren’t entirely new, AI-driven improvements make them more accurate and valuable to users by reducing the anxiety around doing so.
Top-up information will also be made accessible to developers viaAPI Places di Google Maps Platformallowing companies to view real-time details about charging stations directly on their websites and applications.
Improved recommendations on activities to do nearby
Google then recognized the need to improve the recommendation system regarding activities to do nearby. While many users often enter generic search terms like “things to do” nearby, Google Maps will now return more specialized recommendations, making it easier for users to discover activities that match their interests.
For example, if we search for things to do in Tokyo, we will get a list of activities grouped by topic such as “anime,” “cherry blossoms,” and “art exhibitions.” Users can then explore further within these categories.
Google Maps focuses more on images and it gives back visual results based on the analysis of billions of photos shared by the community, thanks to advanced image recognition models. Thanks to this showcase, the user will have the opportunity to discover places that correspond exactly to his expectations. It is currently rolling out in France, Germany, Japan, the United Kingdom and the United States, but will be rolled out to other countries, including Europe, over time.
Immersive experiences with Google Lens and Immersive View
It will soon arrive in 50 more cities including also Rome and Milan the function Google Lens in Mapswhich combining artificial intelligence and augmented reality allows users to use smartphone cameras to orient themselves in unfamiliar places. Like when you exit a subway station or find yourself in an unexplored neighborhood, wishing you could find the closest coffee shop.
Formerly known as “Search with Live View”, examines billions of photos for provide information about the scanned object, such as store names and reviews. This improves the user experience by adding a additional level of information and interactivity to navigation.
The “Immersive View” for the routesinitially introduced in May, is also expanding to other cities, including Florence and Venice. In practice, it allows you to virtually experience the journey before setting off, regardless of the vehicle, be it a car, a bike or on foot, providing more engaging and interactive planning.
Moreover, using the timeline you can plan the perfect time to hit the roadbased on valuable information such as simulated traffic and weather forecasts to avoid wet or traffic-congested roads.
Over the next few months, users in 12 countries will have access to improved visual representations of buildings thanks to AI that fuses images from Street View, satellite and aerial. But also lanes.
So much so that in the United States there are plans to introduce a feature that allows users to check for the presence of HOV (High Occupancy Vehicle) lanes along the routethose intended for high occupancy vehicles, i.e. which carry the driver and at least one passenger and which are activated during rush hours to discourage the use of vehicles with only one occupant on board.