Previously, Waze had this pretty useful feature that allowed its users to report any accident zone, roadblocks, speed traps, and cop check posts in its community that alerted other users who were about to take the same route. Google Map finally rolled out this Latest feature that allows its users to report any such event while traveling to their destination. After months of testing, Google has finally rolled out this feature for all users using Google Map. Although the feature is currently available for Android users, it will soon be rolled out for iPhone users as well.
How You Can Do it?
You can report anything that you spot instantly by using a dedicated button named “Add a Report”.
While following Google Map for navigation, once you spot anything, go to the navigation screen.
Press the report button next to audio.
You can also tap the arrow pointing upwards from the button of the screen and press on“Add a Report”.
Once you have navigated to the report window, report about the speed trap or accident you have encountered.
Before you start traveling, Google Map checks if several people have reported a certain mishap and suggest you to take an alternate route.
If you are traveling on a route that already has an issue reported, once you reach the point, Google Map also asks you whether the issue is still there or not.
Why This Feature is Needed?
Often the route we take to our workplace or any other destination regularly may experience some disturbances. The disturbances may be due to unexpected roadblocks due to natural hazards or some roadworks, and also because of some unexpected accidents. There may also be some mobile speed traps that may result from you get fined if you are over speeding.
This new feature allows you to report the incidents whenever you face it and thus, help fellow travelers stay alert and careful to avoid that route and take an alternate one, thereby saving their valuable time. If any traveler is going on a natural hazards route that you follow and face something, they will also report it and once you open the map, you will get an alert that this route is to be avoided. Just like Waze, Google Map needed this update days ago. However, this option is not yet rolled out for all users and hence, not officially announced.
How Different is the Feature from Waze?
Well, Google has a lot to offer. Waze provides the option to report hazards as well as be avoided. Google still does not offer that and hence, is quite limited. fellow travelers, However, we mustn’t forget the fact that its Google we are talking. Google Maps is the most used GPS based navigation system by both iPhone as well as Android users worldwide. saving their like all other newly added features like offline support or motorcycle route, the developers will definitely improve the shortcomings and release a fix or some new features in their next updates.
Google Launches Lookout App for Visually Impaired To Identify Objects
Google focuses a lot on accessibility. As we all know, their search engine ranking criteria require a website to follow WCAG Accessibility guidelines. It is not surprising that they will launch an app aimed at helping visually impaired people. And as expected after the idea was unveiled 10 months ago, Google’s revolutionary Lookout app is finally available on Play Store. The app is meant to help visually impaired and blind people detect objects lying in front of them through their camera phone. There is a minor catch, however. The app is currently released for Pixel users residing in the United States. It will work in Google Pixel, Pixel 2, Pixel 3 which are powered by at least version 8 of the Android operating system.
The idea of the app was unveiled 10 months ago at 2018 I/O Developer Conference. Although the app is for limited users only, Google has promised that the app will be very soon made available for other platforms, devices as well as countries. Since the idea was unveiled, Google has been still working on improvising the app. With the release of Lookout, another app has been added to Google’s list of accessibility applications.
How Does it Work?
Just like Google Lens, Lookout also uses Artificial intelligence
The user only has to start the application once, without any need to tap any in-app button.
The users only have to point their smartphone or handheld device in multiple directions.
The app searches for objects through the device’s camera lens.
Lookout does its job by telling the users about what is in front of them, either an object or a text or a person.
What makes it special is, it also reads labels and road signs, identifies currencies and scans barcodes. The barcode scanning feature is really helpful since the users don’t need to worry about whether they are paying the right amount for a product they purchased. All you need to do is scan the barcode and the app will tell you the correct price of the product. To properly use it, Google recommends hanging the Pixel device on your neck using a lanyard or keeping the device in your front pocket in a way that the camera lens always points out.
What Is Google Saying?
Google’s Accessibility Engineering’s product manager, Patrick Clary released a blog on which he stated that the app is aimed to help people when they are visiting a new place and require to ask for help, complete their daily chores or require to read a document. However, the app is still new and Google requires user feedbacks in order to fix any bugs or improve it because just like any other newly developed technology, Lookout is also not 100% perfect in what it does. Luckily this is not the first time when a tech giant is releasing an Accessibility application. Previously in 2017, we have seen Microsoft launch a very similar app named Seeing AI. It is accessible only for iOS users. This week, an update to Seeing AI is also launched which uses haptic feedback and allows the users to feel the object’s shape on their mobile screens.