Google Maps Now Gives You Detailed Voice Directions for Walking

Posted on October 10, 2019 by Mehedi Hassan in Google with 6 Comments

Google is improving its voice directions for Google Maps in order to improve the experience for people with visual impairments. The idea is that by providing more details about the walking directions, the navigation experience will be less problematic for those who have visual impairments.

With the new feature turned on, Google Maps will tell you exactly when the next turn is, or tell you that you are in the right direction on longer routes. It will even ask you to cross with added caution for larger intersections and notify you when you are not on the right route. It seems incredibly useful:

Detailed voice guidance on Google Maps is a limited feature now, but it’s rolling out on both Android and iOS. The feature is available in English for those living in the United States, and Japanese in Japan. Google says the feature will support more languages and countries in the future. It can be enabled from within Google Maps settings, under the Navigation section’s Walking Options.

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Comments (6)

6 responses to “Google Maps Now Gives You Detailed Voice Directions for Walking”

  1. dab2kab

    Now how about offline walking directions....??

  2. hrlngrv

    Having seen my children struggle to drive from point A to point B when their phones' batteries have died, I despair for the human species when it ceases to be able to read static, printed maps. As for tourism, one of my better days involved getting lost in Schnoor in Bremen, Germany.

    • Greg Green

      In reply to hrlngrv:

      A part of the Marine Corps base Camp Pendleton is bounded on the west by Interstate 5 and on the east by some very, very, steep hills more than a hundred feet high. Flatland is perhaps 3/4 mile across, several miles north south. The modern safety rules won’t allow any Marine in that area without a working USMC gps device.

      Even without a compass and map you can hear the highway. Keep it to your left and walk to San Clemente, keep it to your right and walk to hospital. If you’re going uphill you’re going the wrong way. If you’re crossing the highway you’re going the wrong way. Yet you can’t be in there without a gps. The consequences of that electronic dependency are a little frightening.

      • hrlngrv

        In reply to Greg Green:

        Question 1: how many walkie-talkies were hit and disabled in Korea and Vietnam. My godfather was a 1st lieutenant in Korea, and he had 2 radiomen and their equipment taken out by enemy fire while he was there.

        Question 2: how long before sensors can detect the EM signatures of GPS devices even if they don't 'transmit'?

  3. Thom77

    Can't wait for when you miss a turn and the "detailed voice guidance" keeps repeating over and over "Turn around ... turn around ... turn around ... turn around ... turn around..."

  4. rvanallen

    I support a visually impaired client. He was a decorated firefighter that had to "retire" due to this condition. These small and often overlooked enhancements are really big deals. With only about 20-percent vision left, he struggles just to walk around the block with a cane. There are many hardware and software solutions in the marketplace but they tend to be very expensive. This option will be a great offering for him and others needing assistance. Good Job Google.