Google Maps updates help you deal with the pandemic

Google announced a handful of upcoming improvements to Google Maps including updates to its COVID overlay, takeout features, and real-time congestion information for public transportation. Alongside them, the company says Google Assistant’s Driving Mode, which gives you access to features like voice controls for music while you drive, is launching in preview in the US.

Driving mode was in Google Assistant It was first announced at Google I / O 2019 And he was spotted It was introduced to some Android devices last month. The mode provides audio controls for features like phone calls and media playback from within the Maps Navigation Screen, so you can access them while keeping your eyes on the road. This includes the ability to read new messages from various messaging apps, answer phone calls, and play media from services like Spotify, YouTube Music, and Google Podcasts. Google says users will have the option to enable the mode via a popup in Maps, or from Google Assistant settings.

Driving mode in Google Assistant lets you do things like answer calls from within the navigation interface.
Image: Google

Next is the COVID-19 overlay improvements to Google Maps that have been launched Back in September. In the coming weeks, it will add more information to it via Android and iOS, including details on the number of cases detected in total in an area, as well as links to COVID information provided by local authorities. Google says this may help you find information about local rules and regulations when traveling.

The COVID-19 overlay will now give information about the total number of cases in an area.
Image: Google

There are improvements to the information Google Maps displays about public transport congestion. Google says maps can now show you how congested public transportation is in real time, helping you avoid a particular train or bus route if social distancing is difficult for you. Uses reviews from Google Maps users, and will be available on Android and iOS globally. The feature relies on predictive traffic information from Google first The show started last year.

It will also provide details of how crowded the public transport is.
Image: Google

Google Maps also shows more information about takeaway from within the app on iOS and Android, with the ability to do so Place food orders directly last year. It can now display expected delivery times, or when the meal is ready for pickup from the restaurant. Google says the feature is rolling out in the US, Canada, Germany, Australia, Brazil and India.

Google says it has added nearly 250 new features to Maps this year since the start of the pandemic, with many of them designed to help people navigate the era of new health regulations and social distancing. These have been included Cautions about the rules for covering the face On public transport, plus warnings to call a doctor if you are You think you have COVID-19.

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