Useful Google Maps features you should start using now

These new features in Google Maps not only make commuting easy but can help in other areas too


These new features in Google Maps are available on  both iOS and Android smartphones.
These new features in Google Maps are available on both iOS and Android smartphones.

Google has added new features to the Maps app in the last couple of months, making it a lot more relevant to users. Some of these features are exclusive to Indian users, and are available on both iOS and Android smartphones.

Here’s a look at how each can help users in their daily life.

Share places with friends

This new feature allows users to create lists of their favourite places on Maps and share it with their friends through social media, instant messenger apps and email. It can come in handy for users who have moved to a new city and need a little help from friends or relatives already living there.To add a place to a list, tap on a place in Maps and select the save option in the next page. You can add the place in a specific category such as Want to Go, Favourites or Starred Places. The saved place will automatically show in the Your Places section in the Google Maps menu.

Save offline maps to MicroSD card

Google Map’s offline mode which allows users to download and save a selected area in a city on the phone’s storage has been around for a while. What is new to it is the option to save an offline map on a microSD card. The bigger the area, bigger the file size will be. If your phone doesn’t have enough space but supports microSD cards, you don’t have to waste time on making room for it. Maps will automatically ask if you want to save the offline map on the phone or the microSD card. Tap on the microSD card and the file will be sent to it.

Finding toilet made easy

Google has added a new feature called toilet locator for its Indian users at the behest of the ministry of urban development. There is no separate section in Maps for it, but it works on similar lines as the searching for restaurant or petrol pump works. Users are required to type in toilet or lavatory in the search bar and Maps will locate and show the closest working toilets in shopping malls, hospitals and petrol stations. The feature is currently viable for users in New Delhi, Ghaziabad, Faridabad, Noida, Gurugram, Indore and Bhopal.

Traffic nearby

Maps users do not have to enter a destination and enter the Driving mode to see the traffic condition around their current location. Traffic Nearby provides traffic updates at the tap of a finger, even without opening the Maps app. It shows all congested roads in an area and the time that will be wasted on that route. One can access Traffic Nearby through the Traffic Nearby widget. Long press on your Android phone, tap on the Widgets button, look for the Traffic widget and drop it on the home screen.

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