In a fresh update released by Google to its Google Maps service on Android, the search giant has introduced Driving Mode — a feature which will guess the destination a user intends to travel, and then navigate to that point.
And while you can download the updated app from Google Play, you can’t use the Driving Mode feature yet. It will be rolled out to users “by the end of this week”. The app, apart from this mode, also features several other improvements, like a new timeline setting for more operational control, a toggle button to switch the sometimes frustrating turn-by-turn notifications and the Driving mode.
Image : Android Police
Spotted first by Android Police, Driving Mode is actually an enhanced version of the erstwhile scheduled navigation. The feature uses your location history and web searches to make assumptions about where you’re driving and give traffic updates and ETAs as you travel. While this sounds similar to Commute or HERE’s Drive Now, influx of such deep data about users makes Driving Mode a bit more powerful, and accurate.
There are two ways to access this new feature. Either you can add a driving shortcut (press on your homescreen, and tap Android widgets, and then select the Google Maps driving shortcut icon), or you can boot up Google Maps, tap the sidebar menu, and select the “Start Driving” option.
Image : VentureBeat
In a statement sent to VentureBeat, a Google spokesperson says,
Now with just one tap, you’ll know whether you should hit the road or put in some gym time to avoid the gridlock. With a simple shortcut on your homescreen–you’ll head straight into the new driving mode so you’re sure to get where you’re going on the quickest route possible without entering a destination. Get information like ETAs, traffic updates, nearby gas prices and quickest routes to familiar places–like home, work and recently searched destinations–all from your homescreen.