How to Use Google Maps and Access Its Best Features


Google Maps has lengthy served because the go-to navigation device for thousands and thousands of telephones, tablets, vehicles, and good wearables. Whereas everybody might be conversant in utilizing Google Maps to get from level A to level B, there are a large number of multitool-like extras hiding beneath the hood which can be value highlighting.

Over time, Google has added options that help you save your favourite locations, share your location with mates, and get personalised suggestions. Listed here are some extra helpful however lesser-known options, like incognito mode, AR reside view, sharing your location in real-time, and even discovering the closest COVID vaccination and testing website.

The best way to play your tunes

With all of the comprehensible give attention to driving instructions and the depth of Google Maps itself, it’s simple to overlook Google Maps additionally options music controls for fashionable music companies like Spotify, Apple Music, and Google Play Music (Android solely). Right here’s the right way to get the occasion began.

First, be sure to are a member of the music service you wish to use and check in to that app in your telephone. Then, proceed with the next steps.

  • Entry the Google Maps Settings out of your image ID icon on the high proper of the Discover tab and faucet Settings.
  • Underneath Settings, discover and faucet Navigation or Navigation Settings (Android).
  • Faucet Music Playback Controls or change on Present media playback controls (Android). For Android, Google Play Music is the default media app.
  • Underneath Join Media to Google Maps, select Apple Music or Spotify. Tapping Assistant default media supplier on Android provides you a listing of alternate options to the default together with YouTube Music, Pandora, Spotify, Deezer, and others through Google Assistant. Simply select the one you’re subscribed to.

The best way to discover accessible transit routes

Google Maps now helps individuals with mobility points use public transportation by particularly figuring out wheelchair-accessible routes. Right here’s the right way to use it.

  • Enter your vacation spot into the app.
  • Faucet Instructions and choose the general public transportation icon.
  • Faucet Choices and beneath the Routes part, and select Wheelchair accessible.
  • Once you select this feature, Google Maps shows a listing of routes which can be wheelchair pleasant, if out there for that location.

The best way to use indoor maps

Not each location gives an indoor flooring plan, however for people who do, you should utilize Google Maps to help you in navigating round a big, complicated venue like, for instance, Penn Station in New York Metropolis. Right here’s the right way to do it.

  • Launch Google Maps in your smartphone or pill.
  • Seek for a spot (like Penn Station in New York) that provides an indoor map.
  • Zoom in to the map so {that a} flooring plan comes into view.
  • Select the degrees or flooring you’re taken with.
  • To study extra about a spot, faucet it on the map.
  • Use the absolutely zoomed rendition of the map to go looking.

The best way to use the Saved tab

Whether or not it’s a favourite place or retailer, or one thing you simply wish to try sooner or later, Google Maps’ Saved tab, positioned in the midst of the underside icon bar, brings all the things collectively to supply entry to your favourite locations or issues. Not are lists, labeled gadgets, reservations, gadgets you observe, or downloaded maps buried inside different menus.

The best way to use Contribute

Say you wish to write a restaurant overview or be aware of an area attraction or retailer, the brand new Google Maps replace now delivers a complete tab devoted to those gadgets on the principle app display. In case you’ve used Google Road View prior to now to submit 360-degree panoramas of your favourite locations, these will present up there too alongside your view rely, likes, and feedback. It’s not a brand new characteristic, however the replace makes it a lot simpler to seek out and use.

The best way to use Reside View

Google added a brand new functionality to its Reside View augmented actuality maps characteristic (now in beta) that allows you to see the route the place that you must stroll and the gap to your vacation spot somewhat than general turn-by-turn instructions. It’s designed as an on-the-ground information that will help you determine precisely the place to make turns or which method to begin strolling. That addition is geared towards serving to individuals on foot who have to know in the event that they’re getting into the precise route however don’t want step-by-step directions. As you’re strolling, faucet in your vacation spot, the Course button on the backside of the display, after which the Stroll icon on the high. Then faucet the Reside View button. The app makes use of synthetic intelligence to superimpose arrows and a strolling map to observe on foot.

The best way to activate incognito mode

If you wish to map areas and navigate in Google Maps with out the app recording your search or location historical past, then you should utilize incognito mode. Since Google added incognito mode to Google Maps, you can even stop your searches and navigation from impacting the personalised suggestions you get. To show it on, faucet your profile image on the high proper, then faucet Activate Incognito mode. You will note your image icon change to the incognito icon so you’re by no means confused about which mode you’re in. To show it off once more, faucet the Incognito icon on the high proper and faucet Flip off incognito mode. Observe that different apps or companies operating in your system could proceed to trace your actions or searches, even with Incognito mode enabled.

The best way to save your private home and work addresses

In case you’re utilizing Google Maps to get round city from work or residence, you’ll wish to first save these vital addresses within the app. Right here’s the right way to do it within the latest model. Launch Google Maps, faucet the Saved button within the icon bar on the backside of the display, and faucet the Labeled tab on the high. To enter your private home tackle for the primary time or change your private home tackle if you happen to’ve moved, faucet the three-dot icon on the Residence line. From there, you may select a brand new location on the map, select a contact who has the brand new tackle (or your personal contact card), change the Residence icon, or get instructions to that tackle from wherever you’re at the moment positioned. You’ll be able to observe the identical process to your office and faucet OK. Now you can ask Google Maps to navigate to Residence or Work as an alternative of getting to sort within the tackle. You can too seek for gadgets like “eating places close to work,” and get a listing of strategies which you could filter in keeping with hours, sort of delicacies, rankings, and whether or not or not you have got eaten there earlier than.

The best way to get instructions shortly

Everybody who makes use of Google Maps Navigation is aware of the navigation characteristic that provides voice-guided, turn-by-turn instructions. However there’s a nifty shortcut to start out it. You’ll be able to seek for a spot or faucet it on the map, then contact and maintain the blue Instructions button on the backside proper, and Google Maps will select the perfect route and launch straight into Navigation mode. If you wish to tweak the route or change your mode of transport, then simply faucet it as soon as, make your modifications, then faucet Begin.

The best way to share your real-time location

If you wish to share your location in actual time with household or mates, faucet in your ID image, and within the ensuing menu, faucet Location sharing. With that, a brand new menu seems with a blue Get Began button. You’ll be able to select to share your location with individuals in your Contacts for 1 hour, Till you flip this off, or use the plus or minus button so as to add or subtract location-sharing time. If they’ve a Google account, it would share your place with these designated individuals of their Google Maps app or despatched as a hyperlink they’ll faucet. You can too share your location through a bunch of different apps, like Messages. Anybody who’s sharing their location with you should have their very own tab on the high of the display and you may faucet on it to see the place they’re.

The best way to share a location

To share a location you want, whether or not you’re at the moment there or not, simply faucet and maintain on any location on the map to drop a pin. Faucet the tackle part on the backside of the display to develop it, then faucet Share. You’ll see a pop-up checklist of apps you should utilize to share your location. You can too ship a photograph view of the place.

The best way to see Road View on cellular

If you wish to see a photograph of your chosen place, use Road View. To entry it, contact and maintain on the map to drop a pin in your location, then faucet on the backside the place it says Dropped pin (or the tackle) to disclose the data. You also needs to see a picture of the placement close to the underside of your display. Faucet that, and also you’ll launch into Road View. To share that Road View, faucet the menu in the top-right nook, after which faucet Share.

The best way to discover close by areas

Once you don’t know precisely what you’re in search of — otherwise you search a number of issues — the Discover tab is there for you. Whether or not it’s gassing up the automotive, grabbing dinner and a film, discovering a good place to remain, or taking a stroll within the park, Google Maps has you lined with native factors of curiosity. Faucet the Discover tab on the backside left of the display, you’ll see a listing of close by areas and actions. Tabs on the high of the display direct you to particular gadgets like Eating places, Espresso, Motels, Bars, Sights, Parks, and Gasoline to assist slender your search.

You can too search particularly by typing instantly within the search bar on the high or through voice search by tapping the microphone icon on the high proper. For no matter you seek for, you’ll see rated listings, their distance out of your location, hours of operation, and whether or not they’re at the moment open or closed. You’ll be able to typically name companies proper from the Maps interface. In case you slide the data panel down, you then’ll see that they’re even marked in your map.

The best way to zoom a map with one hand

Everybody is aware of the right way to use the pinch gesture to zoom out and in, however you can even zoom one-handed in Google Maps. A double-tap will zoom partially, however there’s another choice. Faucet twice on the map, leaving your finger or thumb on it the second time, and also you’ll discover which you could swipe right down to zoom in and swipe as much as zoom out. It may be somewhat awkward at first, but it surely’s there if you happen to want it.

The best way to view maps offline

You don’t all the time need to be on-line to make use of Google Maps. With a little bit of planning, you may obtain and examine Google Maps offline, too. In case you’re planning a visit to Oakland, for instance, you’d launch the app, seek for Oakland, after which, choose the Obtain button. With bigger areas, you’ll get a immediate to pick a smaller space and be suggested of how a lot house it would eat in your system earlier than it begins downloading within the background.

Your saved maps will likely be listed within the Google Maps menu, which is accessible by tapping your Google ID image on the principle Discover tab. One merchandise within the checklist of choices is Offline maps, and that’s the place you may view your obtain. These maps expire in a single 12 months, however you may replace them anytime. Offline maps are fairly restricted. You’ll be able to’t get turn-by-turn instructions, or search maps when you’re offline.

The best way to save favourite areas

Google Maps exhibits you up-to-date searches whenever you faucet on the search bar, however you may simply save areas, one thing that will likely be an actual time-saver sooner or later whenever you search for a spot once more. To avoid wasting a location, faucet on the place you wish to save on the map, develop the data by tapping on the tackle on the backside, after which faucet Save. You’ll be able to select to put it aside as a favourite place with the center icon, mark it as a spot you wish to go, or add it to the checklist of your starred locations. You could find your favorites and saved locations beneath the Saved tab on the backside of the principle window.

The best way to test bus and prepare timetables

Google Maps may help you get the place you wish to go on public transportation and get there on time by letting you test bus and prepare schedules. Merely enter the placement you wish to journey to within the search bar, faucet on Instructions and faucet on the icon of the prepare on the high. You’ll see a listing of choices based mostly on the present time. If you wish to test when a later prepare is on the market or see when the final prepare leaves, then faucet the place it says Depart at and enter a particular time, or you may faucet on Final to seek out the newest choice out there. You can too filter the outcomes by sort of transport (bus, prepare, underground), and set preferences for fewer transfers or much less strolling through Choices in the top-right nook. It even hyperlinks to Lyft, which is able to launch a separate Lyft app to name for a experience, if you happen to selected that.

The best way to change your map view

Google has a number of Maps views, together with map varieties and map particulars. The most important map varieties are Default (like a flat atlas), Satellite tv for pc, and Terrain. You’ll be able to view every of those alone, however you can even layer in particulars like Transit, Visitors, and Biking to every of the principle views. To see Maps variations, faucet the icon on the high proper that appears like two stacked layers, and also you’ll discover view choices for Satellite tv for pc and Terrain. You’ll be able to all the time tilt your map and get an isometric view in Google Maps. Faucet and maintain on the map with two fingers barely aside after which swipe up. Transferring your fingers in a round movement will rotate the map. The Terrain choice will present some hills, but it surely additionally typically exhibits the inside plan of sure areas.

The best way to use voice instructions

Google Maps accepts voice instructions. Simply faucet on the microphone icon on the high proper after which communicate your vacation spot. You can too say OK, Google or Hey, Google in case you have Google Assistant arrange. You’ll be able to flip off the voice by saying Mute or Be quiet. You can too say Present site visitors, ask it to Present alternate routes, or say Subsequent flip to seek out out what your subsequent flip is. Many choices have a number of triggers and there are many potentialities. You’ll be able to browse Google’s full checklist of voice instructions for an in depth abstract of the assorted instructions.

The best way to get instructions for a number of areas

You’ll be able to plot a route with a number of areas in Google Maps. To take action, arrange instructions to your first location as you usually would, then faucet the three-dot button on the high proper and select Add cease. Add as many locations as you want after which faucet Completed. Google Maps will now information you to every location in flip.

The best way to create your personal maps

Google Maps custom map

Google gives a complete set of instruments for creating your personal customized maps for household and mates, permitting you to mark routes, factors of curiosity, instructions, and extra. To get began, be sure to’re signed in to your Google account and go to My Maps in your browser. It’s simple to set a location and mark your POIs and routes, however you can even import layers and knowledge, coloration completely different areas and routes, and extra. Your creations are routinely saved to your Google Drive, and you’ll find them within the Google Maps app in your telephone beneath the Saved > Maps tab. It’s best to get a brief tutorial with suggestions if that is the primary time you’ve tried making a customized map.

The best way to save parking location

It’s simple to overlook exactly the place you parked your automotive, however you may depend on Google Maps, which is fairly good at monitoring this routinely, though it does rely in your location settings. You can too select to save lots of a parking location manually. Faucet on the blue dot that marks your present location when you’ve parked, then select Save Your Parking and it is going to be marked in your map. You can too faucet to see close by landmarks. If it is a frequent downside for you, try the perfect Discover My Automotive apps.

The best way to test site visitors

Visitors evaluation comes inventory with Google Maps. The helpful characteristic may help you discover the perfect route and keep away from jams. The map permits site visitors evaluation by default whenever you request instructions between two locations. Pink areas point out site visitors backups, orange is a little bit of congestion, and inexperienced is obvious. You’ll see icons to pinpoint street development and pace cameras, too. You can too test site visitors whenever you’re simply searching round. In case you leap again to our change your view tip above, you’ll see Visitors listed as an choice which you could overlay. Then, each time you open Google Maps, you’ll see present site visitors data.

The best way to test parking

It’s one factor to get someplace with out turning into misplaced. However parking may be much more of a nightmare than navigation. Cities, particularly, may be difficult in terms of parking. Happily, Google Maps additionally gives parking recommendation for some areas. To make use of the characteristic, plug in your location and test the Instructions display. You may see a P icon subsequent to the time and distance on the backside. Faucet on the icon, and also you’ll get a sign of how robust it is perhaps to seek out parking at your location. For some areas, you’ll additionally see a Discover parking choice. The popup will checklist doable parking areas close by.

The best way to name for a experience

You’ve made your method to the placement, however parking is a nightmare when you get there. Within the metropolis, it may well take simply as a lot time to discover a house because it does to get there within the first place.

To not fear – Google Maps already considered that. To get parking strategies, enter your location into the app and open the “instructions” display. It’s best to see a parking icon positioned subsequent to the gap and time. Click on the icon, and Google Maps will show a listing of close by lot or road parking and your distance from them. You’ll be able to then select from the choices.

The best way to ask questions (Android solely)

In case you’re going to an space the place parking is almost unattainable (or too costly), name a experience as an alternative. Save your self the gasoline and time concerned in snagging a parking spot by catching a experience that’ll depart you instantly at your vacation spot.

Search for the icon of an individual hailing a cab, positioned on the high of the Instructions web page. Faucet that picture to see what your native choices is perhaps. Bear in mind, you may’t hail a experience if there are not any taxis or rideshare vehicles out there in your space. You’ll be able to streamline the method by connecting your Uber or Lyft account to your Google account, too. We have now supplied you with a listing of the greatest ridesharing apps if there aren’t cabs in your area.

The best way to discover the closest COVID vaccination and testing website

Now you can discover the closest COVID vaccination and testing website instantly from Google Maps. Observe the steps beneath:

  • Open the Google Maps app in your telephone.
  • Sort “COVID vaccination” or “Vaccine heart close to me.”
  • Zoom in in your location to see the closest open spots.
  • Click on on a related heart to seek out extra data together with distance and instructions.

You can too obtain COVID data by way of Google Maps by clicking on the Layers button on the highest proper of the Google Maps homepage. Then, click on on the COVID-19 Information choice to see the variety of instances and severity of unfold in and round your area.

Curbside grocery pickup assist on Google Maps

Screenshot of Google Maps Arrival Time Share feature.

Google Maps not too long ago launched a pilot program that allowed customers to make use of the app for curbside grocery pickups. Google Maps exhibits you precisely which companies supply curbside pickup and which COVID security precautions they observe. Then, customers can set a notification to remind them to choose up the order when it’s prepared. The characteristic lets customers share their estimated time of arrival with the store by clicking a Share Arrival Time button, so each events can organize contactless pickup. This system remains to be in its early levels and is just out there in choose areas.

The best way to ebook resorts, restaurant reservations, and extra

You’ll be able to even instantly ebook resorts, make a restaurant reservation and get tickets straight from the Google Maps app. Observe the steps beneath:

  • Seek for “eating places/resorts in [your location]” within the Google search bar.
  • Choose a restaurant/lodge and click on on it.
  • Choose Reserve a Desk or Order On-line.
  • Select a date and time on the reserving web page.

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