Google Maps now has a ’Two-Wheeler Mode"
Currently, this update is released only for Indian usersby Sagar, on
Google Maps previously displayed directions for only four kinds of travelers. People who wish to drive, take the public transport, pedal on a cycle and for those who prefer just to walk. The Californian Tech giant released a new update to its navigation app which will now allow people who wish to travel on two-wheelers also get accurate routes to their destination.
This update, however, is only released for Indian users and will slowly roll onto the rest of the world. The ‘Two-wheeler Mode’ is in its beta phase and Google couldn’t have got a better market to do so other than India.
India overtook China’s vast domestic two-wheeler market as the largest two-wheeler country by averaging a whopping 50,000 motorcycles sold each day. Currently, almost 20 million two-wheelers are plying on Indian roads, and Google sees this as a massive base for its testing and research.
Given the fact that Indian roads are infamously narrow and are already stuffed with cars, pedestrians, trucks, and rickshaws, motorcyclists often chose different routes to reach their destination on which neither cars nor trucks can ply on.
The Motorcycle Mode is released as part of Google’s ’Google for India’ initiative and will save up both travel time and distance since it features in smaller roads and poorer road conditions as well. Google likes to call them ‘Shortcuts’ not accessible to cars and trucks.
Google Maps will also show major landmarks on the route before starting directions so that riders can have an idea of which way to head and not have to stop and check their phone often. Road closures and live parking availabilities for motorcycles will also be shown in the description of the destination.
On the whole, this mode will save riders close to 10 minutes on an hour’s journey compared to cars. That is an hour’s ride cut down for a drive that will take up 5 hours in a car.
This update has only been released to Android users in India currently, while iOS users will get them soon. There is no word on when this update will launch in the States, but when it comes, it certainly will come in handy.
There are already stand-alone motorcycle GPS available in the market by Garmin and TomTom, but no one gives a better user interface like how Google puts it across. And having one device that does everything are always a welcome element, especially for riders who wish to carry light on rides.