Google Maps will Use AI to Become a Better Navigation Aid and Tour Guide

Google Map with AI

Google has all its chips in artificial intelligence (AI). It recently changed the name of its generative AI robot from Bard to Gemini. Now, it’s adding generative AI suggestions to Google Maps.

Image: Shutterstock

The suggestions made by AI will help Google Maps do even better searches for a wide range of places. The feature is also said to act as an advisor, advising people about location, budgets, and the weather. The feature can be viewed through the search function once turned on, just like other Google Maps features. For now, only people in the US can use it, but I hope everyone will soon be able to.

Google has been putting more effort into AI, and this update to Google Maps is the latest example. For example, AI features have been added to Google Workspace apps. Google Maps was also said to be getting AI features and functions in the past, like a better Local Guides tool. The idea behind Local Guides is to share users’ local information and experiences to help them find new places.

What we understand about how this one works

Android Police saw how users were first exposed to the new feature that makes suggestions based on AI. Someone wrote to the website and said that in their Google Maps search bar, they could choose to “Search with generative AI.” When you clicked on it, a page came up explaining how the new feature uses generative AI to make suggestions as part of a short training process. When users tap “Continue,” they are taken to the next page, which shows a list of recommended searches, such as places to kill time nearby or good restaurants in the area.

Like ChatGPT, Google Maps has tips at the bottom of the page to help you get better search results. Users can make their search more specific by adding their income, a place or area they’re interested in, and the weather where they want to go. If you choose one of these suggested queries, Google Maps will then describe how it would choose which companies and locations to suggest.

If the user doesn’t choose a place or region, Google Maps uses where the user is right now. But you’ll have to say so in your search to narrow down your results to a certain place, even if you’re not there.

Once users have tried the feature for the first time and gone through the short training process in Maps, they can get to it right away from the search menu. Google News says that Search with creative AI will show up below the horizontal menu showing your saved locations, like Home, Work, etc.

A feature that looks good and has a lot of possibility

You can only use this tool if you’re in the US, but we hope that users in other areas can use it soon. Google Maps is getting AI suggestions and a rethink of its user interface to make it easier for people to use.

Generative AI is used in so many parts of our digital lives that I can see why some people might be annoyed or overwhelmed by it. But this is one app I’d like to try when it has AI built in. Also, Google knows a lot about improving its apps for users, and I’m excited to see how this feature’s addition works.


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