3 New Google Maps Features Commuters Will Love

Google is rolling out new features for Google Maps on Android and iOS today (Oct. 1) that should make life especially easier for commuters.

Credit: Shutterstock

(Image credit: Shutterstock)

The company announced three improvements via blog. Users will be able to see the location of the bus or train arriving to pick them up visually on the map in real time. Google also will enable support for mixed-mode commutes, meaning if you drive to a train, you'll see individual ETAs for every step of your journey. Finally, in a change that has less to do with commuting — though it will make you journey a little more pleasant — Google Maps now features integration with Spotify, Apple Music and Google Play music from right in the app.

That last change means you won't have to leave navigation to skip tracks or see what's playing. Waze users have enjoyed a similar experience with Spotify for some time now, but Google's support of Apple Music and its own streaming platform makes Maps an even more ubiquitous travel companion.

For commuters who use multiple forms of transportation to get where they're going every day, Google is rolling a number of factors into its time-of-arrival predictions. Everything from the traffic on the road to station delays and even the amount of time it'd take you to walk from your car to the bus or train figures into the total ETA. 

Credit: Google

(Image credit: Google)

Once you get to the station, you'll now see an icon for public transportation when your train or bus approaches. Google is launching this aspect in 80 regions worldwide to start, though commuters in New South Wales in Australia will be especially lucky, as Google Maps will tell them precisely how many people are on the bus or train. This too will presumably reach more cities over time; when it does, at least you'll know when you won't get a seat before you board.

Google says these changes are rolling out right now, so it may be anywhere from a few hours to days before you see them on your device.

See our list of the best Google Maps features for more on how to make the best of the navigational app.

Adam Ismail is a staff writer at Jalopnik and previously worked on Tom's Guide covering smartphones, car tech and gaming. His love for all things mobile began with the original Motorola Droid; since then he’s owned a variety of Android and iOS-powered handsets, refusing to stay loyal to one platform. His work has also appeared on Digital Trends and GTPlanet. When he’s not fiddling with the latest devices, he’s at an indie pop show, recording a podcast or playing Sega Dreamcast.