Google Maps Gets Social With ‘Lists’ Feature For Saving And Sharing Favorite Places

While perhaps not as significant as running water, Google Maps is one of the greatest modern day amenities that is easy to take for granted. Perhaps that is because it is mostly a solo experience—whether looking up directions or zooming down into Street View, it's something you do by yourself. That isn't changing, though Google is making the experience more social by rolling out a new feature that allows users to add locations to their Favorites and share them with others.

Google Maps

Effective immediately, you can create lists of places, share those lists with other people, and follow the lists that your friends and family share with you, all while staying within the Google Maps app on Android or iOS.

"Because sharing is caring, we made it easy to share lists like 'Best Views in SF' via text, email, social networks and popular messaging apps. Whenever friends and family come to town, tap the share button to get a link and start flexing your local knowledge muscles," Google explains. "Once you send a link to your out-of-towners, they can tap 'Follow' to pull up the list from Your Places whenever they need it."

This is something that Google has been testing since last fall. It's basically an expansion of the Star feature that was implemented several years ago. The goal is give Google Maps a more social personality rather than strictly focusing on getting people to their destination. Adding this functionality could encourage exploring new areas and places, which wasn't necessarily the case before.

Using the Lists feature is easy—you just tap on the place you want to add and hit the Save icon. It will add the place to one of several pre-set lists, such as "Want to Go" or "Favorites." You can also create and name your own lists.

Being able to Star and Favorite places might seem a little confusing, but they're not necessarily used for the same thing. A starred location might be a place you want to keep track of, like the local vet or dentist, but necessarily one that you would consider a Favorite destination.