Google Announces Major Google Maps Update, Chances Are You Won’t Be Impressed

Public profile on Google Maps 1 photo
Photo: Google
Google Maps is without a doubt the world’s number one navigation service, but Google is constantly looking into new ways to further expand its functionality beyond its essential focus.
So this week, the search giant announced something that many users that are only interested in navigation and getting directions might not actually be impressed with: a social network-inspired approach that updates Google Maps with public user profiles that others can follow.

Why would you ever need to follow a profile on Google Maps? It’s because local guides, and regular users themselves, can post reviews, photos, and things like that on Google Maps. If you follow someone, you can always stay up to date with what they’re posting, much like on a social network.

And Google even makes the user profile page looks like a social network account. With a profile description and content thumbnails displayed in the lower part of the screen, the Google Maps profile page clearly reminds of Instagram, the Facebook-owned platform that is all about photos and videos.

Google wants users to be in full control of this social side of Google Maps, so you don’t have to use a public profile if you don’t want to. What’s more, you can also make your profile private and only allow people that you approve to follow you, something that’s already available on Twitter, for example.

There will also be new topic filters on Google Maps profiles, so you can see the topics and places people share about the most, like pizza, brunch, camping and parks. Whether they’re a coffee enthusiast documenting every last latte, or a hometown expert reviewing all things Perth or Phoenix, you can follow other Google Maps users with public profiles to get helpful recommendations about the places around you,” Google explains.

The search giant previously released this feature as part of a pilot last year, but the same functionality is now available for every single Google Maps user. You can control all your settings from the Google Maps profile.
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About the author: Bogdan Popa
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Bogdan keeps an eye on how technology is taking over the car world. His long-term goals are buying an 18-wheeler because he needs more space for his kid’s toys, and convincing Google and Apple that Android Auto and CarPlay deserve at least as much attention as their phones.
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