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What is Immersive View? New Google Maps tool shows you Big Ben on rainy days

What is Immersive View? Google has announced a new Maps feature, which aims to give tourists an idea of what they can really expect when they visit.

The new feature will enable Maps users to be whisked away to London, for example, where they can see how neighbourhoods look in different weather conditions (of course the company got a dig in about the London rain!) or during the morning or the evening.

That’ll help users see how busy certain areas of Westminster will be at certain times of the day if they’re planning a trip, for example.

The feature will soar across the landscape, and users will be able to use a slider to see the lay of the land as the hours progress.

In a blog post, Google writes: “With Google Maps’ helpful information layered on top, you can use the time slider to check out what the area looks like at different times of day and in various weather conditions, and see where the busy spots are.”

The feature gets even more useful when the user goes to street level and starts exploring. You can check out the traffic, and keep your eyes peeled for restaurants, as if you were wandering the streets of the UK capital as a wide-eyed visitor.

“You can even look inside them to quickly get a feel for the vibe of the place before you book your reservation,” Google says in the blog post. That feature in particular got a big whoop from the audience when it was revealed during the Google I/O keynote.

Google says the feature will work on just about any device that runs Maps and will initially be available in London, Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco and Tokyo, during 2022. More cities are on deck too.

Elsewhere Google offered an update on Maps’ eco-friendly routing feature, which offers drivers the most fuel efficient route. The company says it has been used to travel 86 billion miles, saving half a million metric tones of carbon emissions. That’s the equivalent of taking 100,000 cars off the road, Google says. Plans to roll out the feature in Europe are afoot.

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