Google Maps is launching new immersive view for major cities including Los Angeles, London, New York and San Francisco later this year. Advances in computer vision and AI allow Google to fuse together billions of Street View and aerial images to create a rich, digital model of the world. With the new immersive view, you’ll be able to experience what a neighborhood, landmark, restaurant or popular venue is like — and even feel like you’re right there before you ever set foot inside. So whether you’re traveling somewhere new or scoping out hidden local gems, immersive view will help you make the most informed decisions before you go.
Say you’re planning a trip to London and want to figure out the best sights to see and places to eat. With a quick search, you can virtually soar over Westminster to see the neighborhood and stunning architecture of places, like Big Ben, up close. With Google Maps’ helpful information layered on top, you can use the time slider to check out what the area looks like at different times of day and in various weather conditions, and see where the busy spots are. Looking for a spot for lunch? Glide down to street level to explore nearby restaurants and see helpful information, like live busyness and nearby traffic. You can even look inside them to quickly get a feel for the vibe of the place before you book your reservation.
The best part? Immersive view will work on just about any phone and device. It starts rolling out in Los Angeles, London, New York, San Francisco and Tokyo later this year with more cities coming soon.
Google also recently launched eco-friendly routing in the U.S. and Canada, which lets you see and choose the most fuel-efficient route when looking for driving directions — helping you save money on gas. Since then, people have used it to travel 86 billion miles, saving more than an estimated half a million metric tons of carbon emissions — equivalent to taking 100,000 cars off the road. The company says it is on track to double this amount as it expands to more places, like Europe.