Google Maps adds a nifty new feature to Immersive View

Google Maps has boosted its Immersive View feature with a new element that lets you explore a planned route in a whole new way.

Announced on Wednesday at its annual I/O event, which also introduced a bunch of cool new devices, Immersive View for routes lets you see every segment of your trip before you set off, whether you’re driving, walking or cycling .

The feature builds on the core Immersive View tool that Google announced at last year’s I/O event. Immersive View was built using computer vision and AI technology to merge billions of Street View and aerial images into a digital model of the world that you can explore in detail.

Immersive View for routes extends this by allowing you to visualize a planned route and also preview useful information about your upcoming journey.

Google CEO Sundar Pichai described the feature as a “completely new way” of viewing a journey while demonstrating the feature during his keynote on Wednesday:

As the video shows, Immersive View for routes offers a smooth, multi-dimensional experience that lets you check bike lanes, sidewalks, intersections, and parking before you set off.

Google Maps’ Miriam Daniel explains in a blog post that it also includes a time slider so you can find out more about the air quality throughout the day and what the route is likely to look like according to the weather forecast, so you can be properly prepared for your journey.

Daniel adds that Immersive View for routes also uses collected traffic data to simulate how many cars might be on the road at any given time, “because a route on a quiet afternoon can look very different during rush hour.”

The feature looks like another great addition to Google Maps, which has been on a monumental journey of its own since the first version of the tool landed 18 years ago.

Immersive View for routes will be rolled out “in the coming months” for Amsterdam, Berlin, Dublin, Florence, Las Vegas, London, Los Angeles, New York, Miami, Paris, Seattle, San Francisco, San Jose, Tokyo and Venice. with more cities expected later.

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