Google Maps is rolling out an update to its Live View feature that makes it more intuitive to use and more reliable as a means of street-level navigation. This is perfect for your next trip abroad—whenever that may be.
The feature, which was launched by the tech giant last year, essentially uses augmented reality (AR) to provide users with a first-person view of their surroundings—complete with markers, arrows, and directions—on the app.
One of the first things the new update does is make Live View more accessible in a variety of locations. In some places, you can open it from the app’s transit tab. While the previous version already supported transit, the feature will now cover walking portions of trips as well. This makes navigating more seamless, letting travelers jump from train to foot on Live View in an instant.
Android and iOS devices will soon also support Live View’s location-sharing feature, something which was previously exclusive to just Pixel users. Basically, if a friend sends you a location, you can use the feature to see his or her surroundings, as well as receive directions to meet with them. In a similar fashion, you’ll be able to tap landmarks and navigate towards them using AR, too.
Lastly, the new Live View will feature more accurate pin placement which will now take into account topography and elevation. This is a relatively subtle change, but one that should come in handy in destinations like San Francisco which feature winding streets and plenty of hills.
Google says users will begin seeing these changes and features in the coming weeks. The Landmarks feature is already available in 25 cities across the globe, including London, Los Angeles, Madrid, Milan, Munich, New York, Osaka, Paris, Sydney, and Tokyo. No doubt this will come in handy when we’re finally allowed to head out as tourists again.