Google Maps has slowly been morphing into more than just a mapping app, especially now with a slate of upcoming updates that make the platform a capable travelling companion.
Over the next few weeks, users will start to see a new feature that tracks your reservations from Google Calendar and Gmail, as well as another that lets you make lists of your favourite places.
Along with this, Maps’ AR Navigation interface will begin rolling out to more phones soon.
Google Maps now handles the when and where of travel
Google has buried the Reservation feature in the side menu under the ‘Reservations’ tab. Flight information and hotel reservations will be stored here. So if you’ve got an upcoming trip and you use Gmail or Google Calendar, then you’ll see when and where your flights and hotel reservations are.
This is useful since it will let users see both when their flight is and how to get to the specific terminal. Google also saves this tab offline, so if you’re travelling you don’t need to use your data to access it.
Create lists of your favourite local hotspots
Google is updating the look of the ‘Timeline’ feature. Instead of only filtering your past locations by days, you can sort the timeline by ‘Places,’ ‘Cities,’ ‘Day’ and ‘Country.’
This makes it easier to look back on your trip to Paris, for example, and pick out all of your favourite places you visited.
You can add these places to a list with the upcoming update and publish that list to Maps or share it with your friends.
This feature should be rolling out now, according to Google.
Book a table in Maps
In this new update users will also be able to book a table at a restaurant via maps. There’s no mention of what service Google is using to do this or if it’s developed a first-party solution.
To help make planning a night out a little easier, Maps is also adding perspective wait times to show users how long they’ll have to wait for a table on average.
This feature is already in use to show when stores are busy and when there’s heavy traffic in some areas.