Google Maps is getting geared up with eco-friendly features

Google Maps is getting geared up with eco-friendly features
Earlier in 2021, Google revealed it is working on improving the Google Maps app to offer environmentally friendly options for navigation. Today, the feature is officially available for Android and iOS Google Maps users across the US, coming to Europe sometime in 2022.

Google Maps eco-friendly routes


Whenever you type in the location you are headed to, Google Maps will give you the fastest and the most fuel-efficient route. You will also get the relative difference in fuel savings and the estimated time of arrival (ETA).

It is important to note that when the fastest route and the most fuel-efficient one have a similar ETA, Google Maps will default to the latter to limit carbon emissions. In relation to that, there will be a new setting in the app that will force it to always default to the fastest option.

The search giant points out that since the routes are more fuel-efficient, they are also easier on our pocket, helping save some money on gas. Additionally, Google states that the feature ‘has the potential to prevent over one million tons of carbon emissions per year—that’s the equivalent of removing over 200,000 cars from the road.’

Google Maps “Lite Navigation” mode


What is even better than fewer carbon emissions? Well, the answer is no carbon emissions. In recognition of that, Google is also planning on integrating the so-called “Lite Navigation” mode.

It is a new mode that allows cyclists to navigate without entering the turn-by-turn interface. Google says it received feedback from bikers saying they ‘don’t want to enter turn-by-turn navigation when they’re cycling since their phone is usually tucked away for most of their ride.’

While in Lite Navigation mode, you will have a birds-eye view of your location and the route you have chosen to reach your destination. Arrows will be visible for every turn up ahead, while at the bottom of your screen you will find live ETA, remaining distance, and even what elevation to expect. The feature is not live yet, but it will be coming to the Google Maps app in the upcoming months.

As another tidbit of information, Google also announced that bike and scooter sharing is live in over 300 cities, some of which are New York, Berlin, and São Paulo.
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