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Latest Google Maps Beta Helps Remind You Where Your Car Is Parked And More

21 March 2017, 12:05 am EDT By Carl Velasco Tech Times
Google has released a beta version of Google Maps for Android, which adds parking and meter reminders. The features, however, look pale at present owing to the lack of any form of automation.  ( Google )

In a day, there is so much to be mindful of — plans, schedules, errands, — that some people simply forget other crucial things, such as where they parked their car. Luckily, in the latest Android beta of Google Maps, that won't be a problem anymore. Sort of.

Google Maps Takes On Parking Reminders

Users will now be able to set a parking reminder inside the app in order to properly locate their car when it's time to do so. Tapping the blue dot, which represents the car, will let users enter notes, and even capture photos of the car and the surrounding location to help them remember where specifically their car is located.

Missing A Crucial Part Of Parking Reminders

The frustrating downside is that none of these features can be automated; users will have to manually input the information in the app just to trigger the functions. The Verge notes that while Google has in place some automated parking reminders, users would still need to go through the Maps app to ascertain that there'll be a parking reminder on the user's smartphone.

Though extremely useful, the ability to set parking reminders isn't new: Apple introduced it last year for iOS, and that doesn't involve any input from users. Apple Maps similarly includes notes and photos, too.

Of course, the feature is still part of a beta release, meaning only a small subset of users are privy to the updated Google Maps app with parking reminders. It's likely that it will roll out widely soon, at least after Google patches identified trouble spots, if it ends up finding any. Automation could also be on the cards in future updates, which will thereby make the app a lot more useful for those who keep forgetting where they parked their vehicles.

In addition to parking reminders, the beta app also includes the ability for users to input how much time they have left, if they're parked in a metered spot. Again, this is very useful on paper, but the lack of any form of automation renders it a tad bit unattractive. Why not just take a photo of your car's location on the camera app, and by extension, why not just set a timer on your phone's default clock app?

Without automation, the new features are neat little extras at best. Hopefully Google realizes this sooner — if they haven't yet, that is, which is unlikely — and works on an update to bring full-fledged automation, so users wouldn't have to fumble with the app anymore just to set parking reminders.

How To Become A Google Maps Beta Tester

Users can sign up for the Google Maps for Android beta through this link. There's no word on a possible iOS release yet, though it's pretty likely that Google will announce it soon.

What do you think? Would you still find parking and meter reminders on Google Maps useful even without the ease of automation? Feel free to sound off in the comments section below!

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