Google Maps for Android has got a new ‘parking difficulty’ feature. To recall, the feature was spotted by a few users last week, and now the search giant has officially rolled the feature out. Unfortunately though, it’s available only in the US – and that too in select regions.
Announcing the feature in a blog post on Thursday, Google said, “in 25 metro areas throughout the US, we’ve introduced a new parking difficulty icon in Google Maps for Android that’ll give you a heads up on what kind of parking crunch to prepare for when you’re on the go.”
As noted in the report last week, the parking availability is displayed with a small rounded ‘P’ icon right next to the travel duration within the app and has three levels, i.e. Limited, Medium, and Easy. Notably, the parking icon turns red in colour when there is limited availability but stays blue otherwise. Users can further expand the directions to get more information about the availability of parking space.
“To see how hard it might be to park where you’re headed, just get directions to your destination and look for the parking difficulty icon in the directions card at the bottom of the screen. Parking difficulties range from limited to medium to easy and are based on historical parking data (similar to how we calculate Popular Times and Visit Duration).
For now, look out for parking difficulty icons in the following metro areas across the U.S.: San Francisco, Seattle, Miami, Atlanta, Boston, Charlotte, Chicago, Detroit, Los Angeles, Minneapolis/St. Paul, New York City, Orlando, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, San Diego, St. Louis, Tampa, Washington, DC, Cleveland, Dallas/Fort Worth, Denver, Houston, Phoenix, Portland and Sacramento”
Google earlier this week rolled out two updates to its mapping application. For iOS, it added the Popular Times widget that shows real-time data for how crowded a place is. For Android, it added the ability to add amenity photos to various lodging places and restaurants.