Is your daily commute stressing you out? According to Google's historical Maps data, daily commutes during rush our traffic can be up to 60 percent longer than what drivers expect at the beginning of their drive. To help with this, Google is rolling out new features to Google Maps aimed specifically at helping drivers take control of their commute.
Google is in somewhat of a unique position to analyze daily communities and understand the frustration that many drivers go through. Google Maps tallies more than 1 billion monthly active users, giving the company plenty of data points to work with.
"Commute data in 25 North American cities tells us daily commute times during rush hour traffic can be up to 60 percent longer than what you expect when you start your drive—resulting in a lot of stress, missed meetings, and skipped breakfasts. According to historical Google Maps data, people in North America spend a full day per month commuting—which almost adds up to a two-week vacation each year. Plus, a bad commute can negatively impact the rest of your day, long after the actual commute is over," Google says.
One of the changes you might notice in Google Maps is a new commute tab. This provides single-tap access to live traffic and transit information relevant to your commute. If there is an accident or heavy traffic, it will give you a heads up so you can factor in the additional time it will take to get where you want to go. And when there are delays, it will offer alternative routes.
Google is taking this a step further for Android users. If you own an Android device, Google Maps can send you notifications about delays and disruptions as they happen.
Since not everyone utilizes a single mode of transportation to get from point A to point B, Google has added support for mixed-mode commutes. "You can see helpful information about when to leave, and for each leg of your trip: you’ll know if there’s traffic on your drive, when the next train departs, and how long it’ll take to walk from the train station to the office," Google explains.
For those who rely on public transportation, Google Maps has been updated to provide transit riders in 80 regions with information on where exactly their bus or train is, with real-time tracking on the map. This could potentially be helpful to anyone who is running a little late, letting them know if they need to book it to the station to catch the bus.
Finally, Google is integrated Spotify, Apple Music, and Google Play Music support into Google Maps. There's no need to toggle between apps when you're struck in traffic.
These new features are rolling out to Google Maps on both Android and iOS this week.