Tag Archives: Maps

Now on iOS: Follow your favorite places on Google Maps

Starting this week, you can stay up to date on your favorite places right from the Google Maps app on iOS. Simply search for a place—whether it’s a new restaurant that just opened up in your neighborhood or that must-try bakery across town—and tap the Follow button. You’ll then be able to see important updates from these places in your For you tab so you can quickly learn about upcoming events, offers and more.  

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And now, places and businesses all over the world can see their followers in the Google My Business app, and actively post helpful information for their followers to see. The Follow button starts rolling out on iOS today.

Source: Google LatLong


Avoid the heartache of Valentine’s Day planning with Google


Whether you’re single, in a relationship, or planning a Palentine’s Day get-together, we’ve got a few ways to make planning your night out as sweet as Valentine’s Day candy. Here are a few helpful features on Maps and local Search that’ll help you plan a night out (or in) from start to finish.

The last minute lover

Although restaurants tend to book up on February 14, if you’re the spontaneous type you can still try your hand at walking in. To give you the best chance at a last minute table, just find the restaurant's Business Profile on Google and scroll down to see when they tend to get busy. For some restaurants, we can even show you whether it's busy in real time, so you can act like you actually had your night planned out all along.

                                       

The stay at home romantic

Sometimes, there’s nothing more romantic (and comfy!) than a nice night in. If you’re planning a party for two at home, it’s easy to get your dinner delivered right to your door. All you need to do is find the restaurant’s Business Profile on Google and select from any of the delivery services listed to have dinner on the table in a jiffy—saving time on cooking so you can spend more quality time together.

The fancy feaster

Dining out on Valentine’s Day probably takes the most advance planning. Lucky for you, Google has all the information you need to make a decision on where to go—and when you’re ready, make the reservation. Once you've found a place that interests you, just open the restaurant’s business profile to learn more by browsing photos, taking a look at menus and checking out the reviews. When you're ready to go, tap the "Reserve a table" button to make a res without ever leaving Google. Bon appetit!

                                      

The Palentine’s Day organizer

Prefer to spend this night out with pals? The group planning feature in the Google Maps app is perfect for helping you quickly find a spot that all of your friends will enjoy. Simply long press on a place to add it to a shortlist, and then share it with friends via your favorite messaging platform. From there, they’ll be able to vote on where they want to go, or add other places to the list if they have alternative suggestions.

 

So no matter how you plan to spend your Valentine’s Day, Google can help you get your planning done in just a few taps or clicks.



Want to get fit in 2019? Here’s how Google can help

It's been more than a week since we entered 2019. And for most of us, that means we're still working on our New Year's resolutions—or forgot what they were in the first place.

Every January, our searches for resolutions spike around the world. We proclaim our best intentions for the new year, but it’s tough to keep promises to ourselves. By the end of the year, most of us are 20 percent less interested in picking up the weights, 30 percent more likely to hit snooze on getting proper sleep and 50% less interested in sticking to a diet.

We all feel it. The struggle is real. Let’s make 2019 different.

Google is here to give your resolutions a boost, with tools and tricks that will help you form good habits to get fit, sleep better, practice digital well-being and live mindfully. Let’s start with some of the most popular resolutions every year: getting fit and eating better.

1. Set your goals in Google Calendar.

Goals in Google Calendar

First up, set some realistic goals for yourself and make yourself accountable by blocking time in your calendar. Goals in Google Calendar automatically finds time in your busy schedule to go for a run, or prep some healthy meals for the week. If an important clash comes up, no worries: Google Calendar will suggest a better time for you.

2. Track your workouts and earn points with Google Fit.

From swimming to gym workouts, Google Fit works with many of your favorite apps and health devices to give you credit for all your moves. Use Google Fit on your Android phone to earn Heart Points and track how your progressing towards meeting your goals.

3. Blaze new trails on your bike with Google Maps.

Bike lanes and trails in Google Maps

Check out the bike paths in San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park.

For the two-wheel enthusiasts out there, you can find biking routes near you by turning on the cycling layer in Google Maps. Dark green lines on the map show dedicated bike trails and paths without cars, green lines show streets with dedicated bike lanes, and dashed green lines show other streets recommended for cycling.

4. Stick to your diet goals with Google and YouTube.

If your resolution is to count calories as part of your diet, Google makes it easy. If you’re in the mood for French fries at lunch, just search “how many calories in French fries” and you’ll get your answer — 312 calories, plus 23 percent of your daily recommended daily intake of fat. You can also turn to YouTube to learn how to make healthy recipes. Thanks to YouTube creators like Veggie Recipe House, The Serious Fitness, and Health Nut Nutrition, you can create nutritious and delicious dishes all year long.

5. Follow along with the #GetFitWithGoogle challenge.

To get you motivated, we’ve invited people from around the globe to show us how it’s done in the #GetFitWithGoogle global challenge. From January 1-28, teams of four influencers per country are competing against each other to earn as many Heart Points as possible during the month with Google Fit.

Here’s the global leaderboard after Week 1.

KEYWORD WEEK 1 RESULTS.png

Get to know the teams!

Follow their progress with the #GetFitWithGoogle hashtag on Instagram, and see who’s taking part in the challenge around the world. Don’t forget to share your fitness progress using the hashtag and let others know how you #GetFitWithGoogle, too.

Twas the night before liftoff

'Twas the night before Christmas, when at the North Pole

The elves and I took charge at mission control


We fed all the reindeer and charged Santa's phone

To make sure they could reach every city and home


He’s off and away on his worldwide trip

Fire up Santa Tracker, you’ll be linked at the hip

On the web, in an app, or ask the Google Assistant

With good ol' Google Maps, Santa won’t feel too distant


This year, hundreds of Local Guides will show you the way

With pics of each place, many mid-holiday

Or if you need a break from the snow and the rain

Santa’s Village is open with fun, cheer and games


Here at mission control, elves are working in shifts

To help Santa deliver seven billion gifts

Season’s greetings to all, and to all a good night

We’ll see you in the morning, after Santa takes flight


Google for Nonprofits: 2018 in Review

This year, more than 100,000 nonprofits around the world connected with their communities and spread awareness about their causes using Google products. As 2018 comes to an end, we’re taking a look back at the many ways these organizations used technology to make a difference.

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DonorsChoose.org allows teachers to create projects that fulfill resources their students need.

DonorsChoose.org drives donations with Google Ad Grants

As the leading platform for giving to public schools, DonorsChoose.org allows teachers across America to bring their classroom dreams to life by requesting much-needed materials and experiences for their students. Google Ads’ ad performance data provides the organization a clear picture of teachers’ classroom needs and donor interest. And conversion tracking data allows DonorsChoose.org to make sure they’re using their Ad Grants account to the fullest. Through Ad Grants ads, the organization drove 7,000 teacher registrations and raised an additional $497,000 from about 5,000 donations in a year.

Raising money for Hope for Paws with YouTube Giving

Hope for Paws, a nonprofit animal rescue group, used YouTube Giving Fundraisers (beta) so that anyone could support them by clicking the “Donate” button on their videos. Through this feature, Hope for Paws was able to raise over $260,000 in September and tell their story to a global audience.

Using mapping tools at the Geo for Good summit

In October, the Google Earth Outreach team hosted the Geo for Good Summit. At the summit, Googlers and nonprofit partners demonstrated how Google mapping tools—like Google Earth, Earth Engine, Google Maps Platform and 360 Street View Imagery—can help organizations raise awareness, whether it’s through mapping and monitoring threats to the planet or mapping indigenous culture.

Expanding reach with Google Maps Platform credits

Organizations like iNaturalist, Code.org and charity:water use the Google Maps Platform to help them reach their goals—from using Maps as a new way for donors to view exactly where their dollars go, to helping people discover plant and animal life from around the world. In 2018, we expanded access for nonprofits to use these products in over 50 countries.

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The Philippine Coral Reef at the California Academy of Sciences.

Collaborating with G Suite: Samasource and the California Academy of Sciences

This year, Samasource and the California Academy of Sciences presented at Cloud Next ’18 about how they used G Suite to make a difference. Samasource, a nonprofit organization that aims to reduce global poverty by connecting unemployed people in impoverished countries to digital work, connected its teams through G Suite for Nonprofits. By streamlining workflows across multiple locations, the Samasource team was able to focus on their goal of helping over 45,000 people out of poverty.

The California Academy of Sciences highlights biodiversity research and exploration, environmental education and sustainability across the globe. At no cost, G Suite for Nonprofits helped the Academy improve accessibility and collaboration across their team. Now, 650 staff members at the Academy can store, search and access shared content from anywhere.

Looking ahead to 2019

Let us know how Google for Nonprofits has made a difference for your nonprofit. In 2019, we’ll be traveling around the world to film a video with five different nonprofits. If your organization has benefited from using Google products, share your story here and you could be one of them.

How Local Guides on Maps helped my new city feel like home

I’ve spent the entire 32 years of my life on the East Coast, specifically in Washington D.C. I had plenty of time to explore every nook and cranny of the city. I had my favorite coffee spot, a particular pizza place and even a beloved skate shop. I love D.C. with all my being, but sometimes you just need to shake things up and move across the country. Which is exactly what I did when I started my new job at Google in July.

I made the journey to the West Coast with my fiancée and dog along for the ride, with absolutely no idea where to start. We had no network of family or friends to rely on for recommendations. I knew San Franciscans favored burritos, brunch and bikes, but where would I begin? I was a little over my head. Luckily for me, Local Guides were there to help add some perspective.

Bobby's family portrait, on a road trip

On the road with my fiancée and pup in tow.

I had never given much thought to who uploaded reviews and photos on Google Maps before. Little did I know there was a massive global community of people who help share their views to craft a better experience for people everywhere. Local Guides are everyday Maps users who share their personal reviews and photos to give others a more informed perspective of their city.  There are also curated lists on Google Maps that feature recommendations from Local Guides, on themes like “Women-Owned Restaurants,” “Secret Menu Eateries” or even “Restaurants That Give Back in SF.”

These tailored options helped me navigate the individual neighborhoods of San Francisco and get a better feel for the city. I picked a few spots based on these lists, and gave myself a few weeks to get out there to explore. I even joined the Local Guides program to get a feel for how the sausage gets made. (Note to self: Find a place that sells veggie sausages.)

Sightglass Coffee in San Francisco

My first priority was to find a local coffee shop. I decided to check out Sightglass Coffee in the SoMA, or South of Market, neighborhood. The coffee bar’s flagship location also houses their production roastery and company headquarters. I scrolled through some reviews and noticed one pointing out, “Watching them roast then getting a pour-over of their single-origin coffee is something I look forward to every time I visit.” I like that, a latte. (I’ll see myself out.)  

Arsicault Bakery in San Francisco

After that, I wanted to find the best bakery in town. I visited Arsicault Bakery in the Richmond District to check out their assortment of croissants. After reading a few reviews, I knew to avoid the brunch and farmers’ market crowd during the weekend mornings, and figured getting there right when they opened at 7 a.m. midweek would be best. Thanks to Local Guides, I avoided standing in line forever, slowly losing my sanity. But it would have been totally worth the wait, because Arsicault Bakery has one of the best almond croissants I’ve ever had.   

Lolo restaurant in San Francisco

Burritos are serious business in San Francisco, but I decided to tackle another list, called “Must Try Tacos in the Mission.” The Mission is such a vibrant scene filled with murals, taquerias, bars and thrift shops. I was already sold on Loló, a restaurant on that list, when I saw photos of the décor on Google Maps, but after trying the Taco Tropical, a fish taco on a jicama shell, I knew I would be back again.  

Cafe du Soleil in San Francisco

I wanted to end the journey with a nice, relaxing brunch, so I found a cute French bistro in Lower Haight called Cafe du Soleil thanks to reviews calling it “another grand lower Haight cafe” that had “Inviting staff and a delightful atmosphere.” Immediately walking in, we were greeted with a huge assortment of pastries, macarons and other treats. As we sat out on the sunlit patio, enjoying our coffee and what had to be a two-inch thick piece of French toast, I realized what a great decision we made moving across the country.

Bobby on the beach with his dog

Though I know I’ve only begun to scratch the surface of what San Francisco has to offer, Local Guides offered me a great look at my new home. I was able to explore the city’s best eats, but the feature includes much more than that. It's cool to share photos of an almond croissant or a bowl of ramen, but users also can share real-time information about any space on Maps, like letting people know about accessibility options, hours of operation and family-friendly destinations. Every review you write or question you answer, and every photo you post or rating you provide, helps visitors and residents alike explore a city with ease.

I think my dog feels a little left out after all of this, so I promised her I would take her on a tour of the best dog parks in San Francisco. Just trying to do my part as a newly minted Local Guide.  

Mapping stories with a new Street View Trekker

From climbing 3,000 feet up El Capitan in Yosemite to floating the canals of Venice to exploring the ancient city of Petra, people and organizations all over the world have used the Street View Trekker to document the places they’re passionate about. Together, we’ve published these adventures in 360 degree view on Google Maps for anyone in the world—no matter where you are—to enjoy.

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petria

Over the years, we’ve gathered feedback from people and our partners who have used the Trekker around the world. Today, we’re upgrading the Trekker so that our partners—like tourism boards, airports and transit operators—can better capture places and their stories. The new Trekker has a sleeker design and is lighter in weight, making it easier to carry. The camera has also been updated with increased aperture and higher resolution sensors that will capture sharper imagery.

Through our trekker loan program, anyone can use the new version of the backpack to capture high resolution imagery to share the stories of places they love with the world on Street View. Like previous Trekker generations, the new version can be put on cars, boats or even ziplines. This helps when capturing hard-to-access places, or when building maps for developing countries and cities with complex structures.

We love seeing what people imagine and create with the Trekker technology. Scientists like Jane Goodall have used Street View to research Chimpanzees in Tanzania, Parisians have shared the inner workings of the Eiffel Tower with the world and conservation groups have conducted polar explorations in the Arctic. The best ideas come from people around the world who travel with the Trekker—we're looking forward to seeing where you take the Trekker, and where it takes you.

For the holidays and beyond, your travel planning guide is here

With the holidays approaching, many of us will travel to see family or go on a vacation. Whether you’re heading out of town over the next few weeks or starting to think about a trip in the new year, we’ve rounded up some of our favorite tools to help make travel just a little bit easier.

Check to make sure your flight is on time

Earlier this year, we started sharing flight delay predictions when you search for your flight status and we’re 85% confident that the flight will eventually be delayed. We use historic flight status data combined with machine learning to make these predictions in advance of airlines confirming delays.

To help with the increase in delayed flights this time of year, the Google Assistant now shows you predicted flight delays, too. You can ask things like, “Hey Google, is my flight on time?” or “Hey Google, what’s the status of the American Airlines flight from Philadelphia to Denver?”

And to make it easier to stay up-to-date on changes to your flight time, over the next few weeks the Assistant will begin proactively notifying you on your phone if we predict a flight delay and tell you the reason if we know it.

Assistant Flight Status

Get the lay of the land with Maps

Traveling to a new destination over the holidays? Google Maps can help when you’re navigating and discovering new places where you live, but it’s also essential when traveling somewhere unfamiliar. We’ve recently added information that is especially useful for travelers exploring a new city. Swipe up on the Explore tab at the bottom of your screen to get ideas of what to do.

Google Maps Travel

Plan your post-holiday vacation

Whether you’re coming off a holiday high or in need of relaxation after all the hustle and bustle, the beginning of the new year is a prime time to think about your next trip. Earlier this year, we unveiled a tool that shows you historic flight price trends, top cities with hotel deals and popular things to do. Now you’ll also see upcoming holiday and school breaks, so you can plan trips around those dates.

If you’re looking for a destination with a good mix of activities for you and the group you’re traveling with, start by searching for “things to do” on Google. In addition to top attractions and relevant articles, you’ll now also see popular experiences for the top destinations worldwide. For example, if you search for “things to do in Nashville” you’ll see things like sporting events, wine tours and hiking in your results. We’ve also recently redesigned things to do to make it easier to filter for your interests, including a new kid-friendly option on phones. You can also now see things to do on a map.


Things to do in Nashville

When you’re ready to start looking at flight prices, Google Flights helps you understand what’s included in your ticket price. You’ll see if prices include a carry-on bag and can filter to see the prices that include carry-on luggage. Now you can also filter to include checked bag fees for domestic flights in the U.S.

Bags filter

Wherever you’re headed during this festive time of year, enjoy your time off and travel safely.

Source: Google LatLong


Travel that last mile with Google Maps and Lime

You just got off your train and you have seven minutes to get to your first meeting on time—but it’ll take you 15 minutes to walk the rest of the way. You don’t have time to walk, your bus is delayed and the next ridesharing vehicle isn’t set to arrive for another 10 minutes. So close, yet so far. 


Today, we’re teaming up with Lime to help you find a better way to travel these short distances. In 13 cities around the world, you’ll now be able to see nearby Lime scooters, pedal bikes and e-bikes as a transportation option right from Google Maps. Simply navigate to your destination and tap on the transit icon to see your nearby options. If a Lime vehicle is available, you’ll see how long it’ll take to walk to the vehicle, an estimate of how much your ride could cost, and your total journey time and ETA. Tapping on the Lime card will take you right to the Lime app, where you can see the exact location of the vehicle and easily unlock it. If you don’t have the Lime app installed, you’ll be taken to the App or Play store.


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Tap on the transit tab to see nearby Lime vehicles. Vehicle options vary by city.


You can now see Lime scooters and bikes on Google Maps on Android and iOS in Auckland, Austin, Baltimore, Brisbane (AU), Dallas, Indianapolis, Los Angeles, San Diego, Oakland, San Antonio, San Jose, Scottsdale and Seattle with more cities coming soon—so you can get to that meeting right on Lime.

Source: Google LatLong


The For You tab comes to iOS and over 130 countries on Android

It’s officially the holiday season, which means lots of time spent with friends and family. But all of that together time can sometimes leave you wondering “um...what should we do now?” After all, there are only so many board games you can play before a mini family feud breaks out.


Today, the For You tab is making its way over to Google Maps in over 40 countries on iOS and 130+ new countries on Android—helping you stay up to date on fun, new places so you’ll know exactly where to take the fam this winter. The For You tab is designed to be a constant source of inspiration tailored to your tastes and preferences. Simply follow neighborhoods or places you’re interested in to get updates and recommendations—everything from recent news about an opening or pop up, a new menu item, and even restaurant suggestions based on what you’re likely to enjoy. If you’re making a trip this holiday season, the For You can help you get a jump start on travel planning even before you take off.


foryougif

The For You tab starts rolling out more widely today. Whether you’re staying local or traveling to a new city, let the For You tab be your guide for your next culinary adventure.

Source: Google LatLong