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Business News/ Technology / News/  Google Maps' new update in India: Lens, Live View, and Address Descriptors take center stage

Google Maps' new update in India: Lens, Live View, and Address Descriptors take center stage

Google Maps introduces Lens integration in India, allowing users to easily search for nearby restaurants and cafes using artificial intelligence (AI). The feature will be available on Android devices in 15 Indian cities from January 2024.

For representation purposes onlyPremium
For representation purposes only

Google has introduced a series of noteworthy updates to Google Maps in India as the year wraps up, with the goal of elevating the app's overall user experience and laying the foundation for future improvements. Among the standout additions in this comprehensive update is the integration of Lens, utilizing artificial intelligence (AI) to simplify the process of searching for various items.

This is the most recent addition to a series of AI-driven features recently introduced on the platform. Speculations have also suggested that the technology giant could be gearing up to launch an AI chatbot within Maps.

New features

In an official blog statement, Google revealed the introduction of Lens in Maps to the Indian market. After being initially launched in the United States and other international markets earlier this year, the feature is set to be available on Android devices in 15 Indian cities from January 2024. With the Lens in Maps feature, users can conveniently point their camera down a street, instantly accessing information about nearby restaurants and cafes, including details such as opening hours, ratings, reviews, and photos.

Despite India's delayed adoption of the Lens in Maps feature, Google is determined not to lag behind. Termed as an innovation tailored for India, Google has introduced a novel feature known as Address Descriptors. When you drop a location pin and share it, Address Descriptors automatically identifies up to five pertinent landmarks and area names surrounding the pinned address. The shared location then displays these landmark references. Powered by machine learning and AI, this feature enhances the user experience.

Google is set to introduce Live View walking navigation in India, allowing users to view arrows, directions, and distance markers superimposed on the Maps screen for easy navigation. The feature will be available on Android devices in more than 3000 cities and towns across India, aiding users in quickly determining the right direction to follow.

While announcing the new features, Miriam Daniel, VP and GM of Google Maps, said, “Our goal with Google Maps has always been to organize information about the real-world and make it accessible and useful for everyone. And along this journey, AI has supercharged the way we map for nearly a decade, enabling us to build a comprehensive, up to date, and helpful map that is at the foundation of everything we do."

Additional features encompass fuel-efficient routing, offering potentially eco-friendly alternative routes to minimize CO2 emissions. Furthermore, Google has revealed the extension of the Where Is My Train app to include Mumbai and Kolkata Local Trains, with plans for further expansion to additional cities in the future.


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Published: 20 Dec 2023, 01:52 PM IST
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