The Latest Google Maps Update Could Make It Your Go-To Restaurant App
The Internet was made for food. Sure there's news and information and some other stuff online, but what we really care about is the food. From restaurant lists and reviews to social media photos of the most Instaworthy dishes to keeping up with chefs' pop-ups and political causes, we've got a huge appetite for consumer food online which translates into our consuming it in real life. Navigating all of that information in the real world can be a bit of a hassle, but Google Maps hopes to be your one-stop shop for keeping tabs on the restaurants you want to visit and those you didn't know you wanted to visit just yet. Announced today, here are the new features which you can expect to find in the app in the very near future:
Wherever you are, Google Maps will show you nearby dining options, events, and activities. The Foodie List, a new feature, will show you the restaurants tastemakers are hitting up, with local experts, publications, and Google's algorithms weighing in. And once you actually dine at a restaurant, it will be crossed off the list so you can keep track of where you've already been and where you still need to go. (Interestingly, OpenTable also launched an "explore" feature earlier this month.)
Each restaurant will be given a percentage score, based on your past dining choices, which predicts how likely you are to enjoy that eatery and why.
Tap and hold on a restaurant listing and it will be added to a shortlist which can be shared with family and friends who can then vote on where they'd like to dine. Integrated reservations and rideshare services make it easy to coordinate everything within the app. (Interestingly again, Instagram also folded reservations into its interface this week.)
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Based on your preferences, Google Maps will clue you in on new openings, pop-ups from your favorite chefs, or keep you up to date on restaurants building some buzz in neighborhoods or cities you choose to follow.
According to Google, all of these features will be rolled out to both iOS and Android users in the coming months.
That's not the only trick the company has up its sleeve for your restaurant needs. Google also demonstrated how its assistant (the voice-activated service available on Google Home and mobile devices) can make phone calls on your behalf. Want a restaurant reservation? Just ask Google Assistant and it will take care of it for you. The restaurant employee on the other end of the phone won't even know the difference.