Google Maps has evolved quite a bit over the last few years, and we've become exponentially reliant on it for orientation since 2012 when it replaced Apple Maps on iOs. From turn-by-turn walking guides, to public transit options, to parking locations and bike routes, Google Maps is pretty much everyone's go-to for getting around. And starting May 1, New Yorkers are going to get even more attached to the app with a game-changing new function that provides real-time Citi Bike information in Google Maps. Yes, things are about to get a lot easier, as you no longer have to use multiple apps to figure out how to get to where you're going. You can do all of the computing and routing within one app that not only gives you directions and route suggestions, but it now tells you everything you need to know about what to expect from the bike shares around you. Because no part of your morning commute should be a mystery. If apps can tell you when a train is coming, an app should be able to tell you if a bike is available. And finally, it does!
In the Google Maps app update, New Yorkers will be able to see what bike share stations are open around them, whether they are accepting returns but not rentals and the reverse possibility, too. Google Maps will also tell you exactly how many bikes are available at any given station so that you don't go all the way to one spot only to realize that there are no bikes. Knowing what to anticipate at a bike share station is a not only a great planning tool, but a huge relief because it makes bike shares reliable in a way that they never before were. The bike share system is now officially part of the New York City transit system, it's all regulated and monitored, hopefully making just as easy to catch a train as it is to find a bike to ride.
And in case you're not fully up-to-date with Google Map's functions, here's a refresher of a few of the coolest things you can do on the app:
1. Google Maps Can Take You Back In Time
See how building and streets have changed over time in Street View. Just drag the small yellow figure onto the map and tap the clock icon. For places that Google has archived images (dating all the way back to 2008) you can see how things have changed. If you live in New York City, you know that 10 years is enough to make a street unrecognizable.
2. Google Maps Can Remind You Where You Parked Your Car
Never have a "Dude, where's my car?" moment again. The Google Maps app can remind you where you parked your car and even how much more time you have left at your meter if you paid for parking. All you have to do is click the "Save Your Parking" tab and it will store your cars location and help you get back to it.
3. Google Maps Can Show You Where You've Been
Google Maps keeps a record of everywhere you've been. You can take a look at your history on your browser when you're signed into your Google account (for safety reasons) and you can see all of the places you've bene in a day. You can also pick other days to look back on, even days that are now months away. You can also delete all of this information and turn off the tracking if you're not into it.
Whether you're a New Yorker commuting across the city or visiting and prefer to see all the sights via bike, this new feature will be a huge game-changer for those getting around NYC.