After fuel savings, Google Maps is interested in tolls

Google Maps does more than just find directions. Thanks to Google data, and the use of artificial intelligence, the app can also help you avoid crowded transport, traffic jams, or even know the peak hours of a place.

And recently, as fuel costs climb, Google announced the rollout of a feature to reduce fuel consumption in Europe. Available in North America since last year, it tells you which route will cost you less fuel.

“I’m happy to share that we’re expanding this feature to more locations, including Europe later this year”Google CEO Sundar Pichai announced in May. “In this example from Berlin (note, image below), you could reduce your fuel consumption by 18% by taking a route that takes only three minutes less. These small decisions have a big impact on a large scale. With expansion in Europe and beyond, we estimate that carbon emissions savings will double by the end of the year. »

According to the CEO of Google, this route in Berlin reduces consumption by 18%, but loses only 3 minutes. ©Google

In addition to reducing emissions, this feature will also save users money. And later, Google Maps should also come with a feature that will tell you how much you’re going to spend on tolls.

When Google helps you save money

“To make it easier to choose between toll roads and regular roads, we are rolling out toll rates on Google Maps for the first time”we read in a note published by the Mountain View firm.

Unfortunately, at the moment this novelty is announced for the United States, India, Japan and Indonesia. But Google promises to offer the same functionality in other countries later, without specifying which ones. On the Google Maps iOS and Android apps, the firm will be able to display information on nearly 2,000 toll roads in the countries concerned.

Google explains that this information can be consulted by the user before starting the journey, and will be based on data from toll authorities. Maps will take into account many factors, such as having a pass, the day of the week, as well as estimating the cost of the toll at the exact time the user should pass.

“You will have the option in the settings to show toll prices with or without a toll card – as in many geographies the price changes depending on the payment method you use. You will also always have the option to avoid routes crossing toll roads entirely, if possible, by selecting ‘Avoid tolls’ in the settings »adds the Mountain View firm.

As noted by our colleagues from Android Police, there were already signs that this feature was under development last year. Then, it was announced by Google in April, along with other new features for drivers such as the display of road signs.

Moreover, the novelty was to land in April. But it seems that this deployment took longer. And finally, Google only announced the availability of this toll information this June.

In any case, it is a feature that, combined with the function to consume less fuel, should lead to quite significant savings. Let’s hope that the Mountain View company will not forget Europe.

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