Latest Updates to Google Maps: New Restaurant Search Filters, OS Specific Features
Google has gone to great lengths to improve both the functionality and relevance of Google Maps, with the aim of positively impacting user experience. Several updates to Google Maps were rolled out to Android and iOS devices on January 14, 2015, and January 15, 2015, respectively.
For iOS users using Version 4.2.0, weather information for cities around the world is now available. (This could be useful for the intrepid world traveler.) Google Maps now also lets iOS users share directions they have saved to their contacts, as well as sync transit directions to their calendar for meetings or important events. Finally, iOS users will be able to fine tune their navigational path by dropping pins on both their starting and destination points on the map.
Both iOS and Android platforms were fitted with a new filter for restaurant searches. Google Maps now allows restaurant search results to be filtered by cuisine type in an effort to help people decide on the best possible dinning locations based on what they’re in the mood for. Although not explicitly stated, this could lead users to depend more on Google Maps for restaurant recommendations over other apps like Yelp.
Aside from the standard directions and store operating hours, Google Maps also has a rating system in place that could help people decide whether or not an establishment is worth their time. It may not ultimately replace Yelp at the moment, but it seems like Google is starting to dig into Yelp’s download numbers by offering similar features to users of Google Maps.
Another useful additional feature is the ability for business owners to claim their listings and manage their presence via Google Maps. Android users were the first to get this feature when the update rolled out on their platform on January 14th, and this feature was expected to arrive on iOS at a later date this year. However, Google issued another update the following day that implemented this feature on iOS as well.
For more info on the updates, CNET has provided a quick tutorial on the new iOS features.
How will these updates positively impact listed businesses on Google Maps?
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