Published: Mon, February 11, 2019
Technology | By Lionel Gonzales

Google Maps AR navigation feature now available for some users

Google Maps AR navigation feature now available for some users

It looks like the feature is almost ready to be rolled out to the masses, as reports indicate a handful of users already have access to it.

The video shows the user holding up his phone while in Google Maps and the camera scanning what it sees in front of the phone.

As pointed out this feature was first shown at Google's I/O developer conference last year in May 2018, but has not officially rolled out, and it has been close to a year since it was announced. Google isn't expecting you to use this feature throughout the entire guidance but rather wants you to navigate complex intersections more easily.

The new navigation system uses your camera to provide directions using augmented reality.

That said, it looks like it won't be taking over as the standard method of using Google Maps.

Google introduced a new augmented reality (AR) mode for Maps at I/O 2018 and it was one of the biggest crowd-pleasers at the keynote past year.

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No dates have been set for making it widely available to Map users. This primarily means that Google Maps combines Street View and data from Maps using smartphone's camera for easier and better navigation. After it has done this, it then creates directions for the user based on the location.

If the user has asked for directions, big arrows showing the user the direction to walk in is overlaid on the buildings on screen.

Google gave The Wall Street Journal early access access to the AR mode feature, and the publication took it for a spin to test out its capabilities. Later this year, his voice will come to the Google Assistant. At the bottom of your screen, you'll see a more traditional Maps UI so you can get really get a good understanding of where you're at and where you're going.

The feature will likely also be available through AR glasses in the future.

And Google could soon roll out a new version of maps that addresses an age-old issue where you're unable to figure out which way is North or South.

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