This week, Google is rolling out a long-awaited update for its Maps service, integrating augmented reality (AR) navigation visualizations, search functions, and immersive retail tools, 9 to 5 Mac reported.
The software giant first previewed Google Maps Live View’s AR functions in September. Now, the Mountain View-based firm is deploying the immersive service to Android and iOS users this week in cities such as Los Angeles, San Francisco, New York, London, and Paris.
Google Live View lets users see their surroundings with added AR informational pop-ups via their smartphone camera. The application highlights points of interest from a mobile camera’s point of view, such as store locations, opening times, and pricing.
Additionally, Google Maps Live View will highlight out-of-sight areas of interest that other buildings or landmarks may obscure. The application will display a location’s logo with supplementary information.
Moreover, the immersive service lets users browse additional information regarding an AR-highlighted location. The service displays an interactive carousel at the base of a smartphone’s screen. The carousel provides information such as offers and ratings.
Then, by choosing “start directions,” a user can bring up AR-navigational pop-ups, including overlayed arrows and distance information to find their destination.
On the other hand, Apple also debuted its own AR-ready maps service in June 2021. The iOS 15 update introduced various tools which allowed users to see 3D visualizations of surrounding areas with added informational pop-ups.
Further Updates to Google Maps, Lens, and Multisearch
Additionally, Google is rolling out updates for its Google Lens Multisearch service. The latest version enables US English language users to access tools to accompany the immersive Live View features.
Google Lens Multisearch allows users to search for items via an uploaded photo. To access this feature, users must upload an image of a food item to the Multisearch engine. The service will predict where users can get their desired food items by using “near me” or similar text queries.
Furthermore, Google is updating its Lens AR Translation service to accompany the Live View and Multisearch functions.
Later this year, the enterprise is rolling out its immersive translation service to read different languages. For example, a user can view a real-time translation as an AR overlay on the original real-world print.
Google is also rolling out native virtual try-on features with selected brands. In collaboration with Armani, Google is experimenting with an integrated photo library of roughly 148 images of foundation makeup so that users can preview a product on a skin tone that reflects them.
Fashion brands like Saucony, Vanas, and Merrell also employ virtual try-on opportunities from Google, which enable potential buyers to preview shoes as a digital twin before purchasing.
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