Imagine going to visit a new city, and as you are walking around you want to know what’s around you, like where to eat, where to shop, where’s an ATM or a public restroom? And then all you have to do is point your smartphone camera in any direction to find out. Google’s new feature, Live View, does just that!
Using Google Live View
Live View uses augmented reality (AR) features and is part of the Google Maps app. It includes search and discovery elements. To use Google Live View, open the Maps app, touch the camera icon, and point the phone at what you want information about. This starts Live View with the Google Map app highlighting nearby landmarks off in the distance, while the street names are overlaid on the ground. You can search for specific businesses and categories, or just discover what’s around you.
Find Places Near You
At the bottom of your screen, you’ll see a prompt to “Find places near you,” specifically “Within a 5 min walk.” There’s a carousel for common place choices like restaurants, ATMs, and shopping, as well as coffee shops, grocery stores, transit stops and more.
After you make a selection, Google Lens will direct you to the nearest one with floating arrows. The place cards will note the business name, the Google Maps rating and hours, and while tapping on it opens the full listing of your destination and you can even check out the services offered and the reviews.
Search with Live View is rolling out now for London, Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco, Paris and Tokyo. But you can see where this is heading. Google Maps, in general, is getting much more visual and interactive in real time.
The bottom line is this: As a small business, your local customers are looking for your products and services online and your Google Business Profile on Maps helps them find you. Today, you can add videos and photos and other information that showcase your business and that can be displayed in Live View when it comes to your town.
Links in this episode: 4 new updates that make Maps look and feel more like the real world