Google has overhauled its Maps app and introduced new street-level features to make it more accurate and easier for users to get around.
The world’s most popular online maps platform is also rolling out visual improvements to bring more detail and colour for natural features like mountains and forests.
The new colour-mapping will be introduced across all 220 countries and territories that Google Maps supports, while the improved street detail will only be available in a select number of cities.
“While seeing natural features can help you get a feel for an area, sometimes you need more information to get around safely and efficiently,” Sujoy Banerjee, a product manager at Google Maps, wrote in a blog post.
“Soon you’ll be able to see highly detailed street information that shows the accurate shape and width of a road to scale. You can also see exactly where sidewalks, crosswalks, and pedestrian islands are located – crucial information if you have accessibility needs, like wheelchair or stroller requirements.”
Such features will prove particularly useful to anyone “opting to walk or take other forms of solo transportation due to the pandemic,” Mr Banerjee added.
The detailed street maps will first come to London, New York and San Francisco, with plans to expand to other major cities in the future.
The update comes less than a month after the technology giant introduced new features to improve cycling journeys across London in order to meet people’s travel needs.
Requests for cycling directions in Google Maps jumped by 69 per cent between February and July, as more people chose to avoid public transport during the coronavirus pandemic.
In order to assist users choosing to cycle, Google Maps added details for the Santander Cycles hire scheme to provide real-time updates on the number of bicycles at docking stations.
The bike hire features were also added to Chicago, New York, San Francisco, Washington DC, Mexico City, Montreal, Rio de Janeiro, Sao Paolo, and Taipei.
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