Crowdsourced live data by Google Maps will now help users avoid crowds on public transit

Google Maps has recently announced that they are using imperative information of crowds for car commutes and public transit from next week onwards.

Google Maps is also rolling out relevant alerts about face mask requirements from local agencies in different regions including Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Belgium, France, Columbia, India, Mexico, Spain, Netherlands, Thailand, UK, and the US.

Google Maps has proved to be a source of important information about addresses, busy hours, alerts about rush areas through their crowdedness prediction feature. But now, the app will even show whether a transit station is busier or less crowded, based on live data aggregated and anonymized from Google Location History. This information will be available on a transit station’s listing page.

These feature are going to start rolling out in the coming weeks.

Sharing of personal experiences to contribute to help others is also encouraged by Google Maps, as they say, that through this new update, looking up for directions, tapping through various Transit details and checking out crowdedness predictions is all going to become super easy and smooth.

This feature will also provide insights into temperature, accessibility, on-board security, and information about areas designated especially for women or men. Google launched these changes with the broader Maps redesign back in February, and they added the ability to provide granular wheelchair accessibility information to the public all around the globe. Other information for the ease of ‘people with determination’ that Google Maps will add includes accessible doors, seating arrangements, and stop buttons.

When public transit directions will be searched, Google Maps will show information regarding special precautionary measures due to the COVID-19. These alerts include notifications regarding COVID-19 checkpoints while crossing national borders. This feature will be launched in Canada, Mexico, and the US first. This alert will appear on the directions screen once a user begins navigation.

Apart from alerts regarding public transit stations, from this week onwards, alerts for medical faculties like hospitals and clinics will be available in Israel, Indonesia, South Korea, and the Philippines. Testing centre alerts will be available in the US.

This is a way to verify the eligibility and facility guidelines so that no one gets turned away while also taking care that no additional burden affects the local healthcare systems. Due to the overload of cases, many people who are not very serious can be turned away from treatment in these facilities. So, insights into overloaded and fully crowded facilities will be beneficial for these people.

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