Google announces Motorbike Mode on Google Maps

Written By: Beth Nyaga
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Google announces Motorbike Mode on Google Maps
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Motorcycles can now use Google maps which will provide directions, voice navigation and turn-by-turn navigation, to suggest routes that are more efficient and provide an optimal travel experience.

For over a million Kenyans, boda bodas are a convenient and affordable way to move and transport goods from one place to another.

This announcement was made by Jeff Albertson, product manager Google Maps on Monday at the first ever Google for Kenya event.

The new motorbike features include

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  1. Smarter, more optimized routes: Using machine learning, the motorbike mode in Google Maps plots routes that are best suited to riders, using shortcuts that are generally not accessible to cars and larger vehicles. This results in shorter travel times and more convenient route
  1. Use landmarks for suggestions: Motorbike riders find it easier to navigate by landmarks en route to their destination. Major landmarks along a given route will now be shared with riders, making it easier to get a sense of the journey even before setting off, so they don’t need to check their phone when they’re on the
  1. Accurate ETAs for riders: This mode accesses a greater number of route options when searching for a route (choosing from roads that may not be suited for cars, for example) and road speeds are accounted for differently with motorbike riders. This, along with customized traffic intelligence makes results in more accurate ETAs for motorbikes.
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Google announces Motorbike Mode on Google Maps

Google Street View

In 2007, Google introduced Street View, 360-degree panoramic imagery of streets and public places.

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Street View basically lets you virtually explore and navigate a neighborhood through panoramic street-level images right on Google Maps.

Today, it’s available across 77 countries, as well as parts of the Arctic and Antarctica (featuring penguins!).

Street View imagery is gathered in a number of ways: some places are captured by the Street View car, some imagery is gathered by a three-wheel Trike, some on the slopes by Street View snowmobiles, and some is gathered by the Trekker.

Street View Car 

  • Street View cars have special cameras that take photographs as they drive down public
  • Once the photographs have been taken, they go through computer processing to make them ready for use on Google
  • This includes stitching the still photos into panoramas, and applying our face blurring technology that helps make sure that passers-by and license plates in the photographs can’t be identified.
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Street View Car
Street View Car
Photo Courtesy: Google

Street View special collections

The Special Collects Program provides 360-degree panoramic imagery of unique locations like heritage monuments, touristic sites, museums, national parks, transit locations and much more.

  • The program covers both indoor and outdoor spaces
  • The Fleet is composed of prototype vehicles (like trolley, snowmobile, trekker ), adding uniqueness to each capture
  • The imagery shoots are scheduled and planned in collaboration with the site owners/ administrators
Google Trolly
Google Trolly
Photo Courtesy: Google
Google Trike
Google Trike
Photo Courtesy: Google
Google Trekker
Google Trekker
Photo Courtesy: Google

Street View Metrics

  • There are more than one billion monthly active users of Google Maps
  • Street View imagery is available in more than 77 countries, including imagery from over 300 sites in the

 

 

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