March 13, 2021 report
Google allows users to update the Maps app with photos
The COVID-19 pandemic has brought about many changes, including business closures and updated hours for restaurants and stores.
Now, Google has ensured that any users with a Google account can make necessary changes to over 200 million places on their Maps application. A newer development within Maps includes Local Guides, a community of 150 million users around the globe who contribute to Maps updates.
In order to make the Maps experience even easier, Google has created a way for users to learn more about place options by exploring an assortment of photos, reviews and updates about locations from all over the world. For example, Android phone users can now use the Contribute tab in Maps to join the "Local Love Challenge" and write ratings and reviews as well as place location confirmations. The current goal stands at 100,000 recorded businesses. The Maps team plans to use the Local Love Challenge toward updating data on locations for countries covered in the future.
Another feature the Maps team will add in the coming weeks is photo updates – an easy and fun place to share recent photos of visited places. These updates will help provide users insight into not only a business's appearance and location but also the street view and various traffic conditions nearby. To make this feature more convenient, users can simply leave a one-line description of their photos as opposed to a rating or detailed review. In order to participate in photo updates, users can navigate to the Updates tab when viewing a place and select "upload a photo update". All users may upload as many photos as they wish as well as view any photos left by others in the Updates section.
In fact, users can even help revise routes within the Maps app by selecting the "Edit the map" feature and reporting a "Missing Road". Moreover, Maps users can add missing roads by drawing lines, change road directions, rename roads and delete or realign incorrectly named roads. Users can also inform the Maps team about road closures along with details such as dates and reasons. In order to ensure the accuracy of user-provided data prior to publication, the team at Google will assess all updates made by the user.
While the updates feature is already available in over 80 countries, the new location photo features will become available over the coming months.
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