Google Maps Receives An Augmented Reality Makeover With Personalized Recommendations

There has been a lot of cool technology shown off at Google I/O, including Google Duplex and the Google Assistant having the ability to book appointments for us. But that's not all that Google announced at its annual conference. Google Maps will be getting some cool new features that will make the app more useful for everyday users. One of those new features is augmented reality directions that give a Street View mode with directions that you can follow in real time.

google maps ar

The AR direction feature is a mash-up of the existing Street View tech and Maps data that feeds live video from your phone's camera to overlay walking directions on the real world. That means you don’t get lost as much when you are walking around a strange city or a part of your hometown you aren’t familiar with. Google's new AR mode is also able to identify the places around you, which is a very helpful feature if you are looking for a hard to find local retailer or eatery.

Google is also working on an augmented reality animal guide that will lead you along the way (the demo used a playful fox). Google wasn't particularly clear about the future of this AR direction feature, so it remains unclear if this is simply a tech demo or a new feature that will be coming to devices.

Google has confirmed that it will be adding a new tab to Maps called "For You" that will give you recommendations that are tailored to your likes. The For You tab will use a "match number" system that is able to generate a score based on how much it thinks you will like the recommendations it has made. That match number is based on reviews you have left in the past and saved food preferences. This means it will know that you don’t care for Korean food, but deep-dish pizza is your kryptonite.

Google is also working on social features for maps with one of the ideas being a way to suggest multiple places to eat to friends and then allowing your pals to vote on the place you eat. An exact launch date on these features are unknown; all we know for sure is that Google has promised the features will land this summer for Android and iOS.