Google Maps Merging Waze Features

BGR Media reports that Google Maps is popping up alerts, asking for information on how crowded the train/subway is:
https://bgr.com/2019/04/17/google-maps-features-how-crowded-is-your-train-question-explained/ .

This is just the start of beefing up Maps’ ability to predict traffic levels – I expect Google will be collecting much more information about public transportation, and use that data to power its AI. In the future I could see Google Home offering route planning comparisons between an Uber or train: including informed predictions about how long each will take, how crowded the train will be, etc.

Google’s Next Money Maker: Maps

Ad Age, a magazine on marketing and media, recently ran a story about how Google’s next money maker will be its Maps service.

Ad Age article picture: shows a Google maps screen.

It’s a nice commentary about the business and consumer sides of Google Maps. On the personal/consumer side, Google is adding more advertisements when people search for an address – for example, asking if you want delivery via DoorDash if you search for a restaurant. There are also “promoted pins” which are map pins that appear showing an advertiser’s location, even if the advertiser isn’t relevant to the search. On the business side, Google recently increased the cost of using Google Maps embedded into a website/app/mobile app.

Read the article here:
https://adage.com/article/digital/google-flips-switch-its-next-big-money-maker-maps/2163976 .

I predict we’ll see more ads and more monetization of the Maps service. Google needs to diversify its revenue – most of it currently comes from ads – and Maps is a great source of data. It wouldn’t surprise me to see Google expanding the Google Local service, encouraging more business reviews from customers so they have more local data to display along with Maps.

Google Maps Help Screen

For those of you who need a little help with Google Maps, Google offers a screen with all the keyboard shortcuts available in Maps. Just open up Maps, click anywhere in the map area, then hold down the [Shift] and [?] keys – you’ll get the screen below:

Google Maps shortcut screen.
Google Maps shortcut screen.

Finding The Latitude & Longitude (GPS Location) Of A Spot Using Google Maps

If you need to find the GPS coordinates of a certain location, Google Maps makes it easy. First, find the location you want on Google Maps. I’ll use Epcot, Disney World as an example:

Epcot, Disney World
Google Maps view of Epcot
Google Maps view of Epcot.

Zoom in on the location you want, then right click and select the “What’s here?” option:

Using the what's here? option in Google Maps.
Using the what’s here? option in Google Maps.

A small gray pointer will appear on the map (I’ve marked it out with an orange arrow in the screenshot below). The GPS coordinates (lat, long) will appear in the little box at the bottom:

The location marker (see orange arrow) and the GPS coordinates will appear in the small bottom box.
The location marker (see orange arrow) and the GPS coordinates will appear in the small bottom box.

As you can see, the small box reads: Orlando / Florida 32836 / 28.375250, -81.549385 . The lat/long coordinates are in the bottom row: 28.375250, -81.549385.

The small box with the GPS coordinates.
The small box with the GPS coordinates.