Google Maps has launched three new, more personalised features for Indian users that will enable them to get better recommendations for dining experiences, and other attractions in and near the location they are in.
The Google Maps app will have an “Explore” tab, “For You” feature, and “Offers”. While the Explore tab has existed for some time, the idea is to provide more personalised suggestions based on search history.
“We’ve heard that Indian Maps users prefer a more assertive and visual browsing experience that is easy to access. To reflect this, we have a redesigned, India-focused Explore tab, the For You feature, and dining Offers. This will help Google Maps users discover a new side to their city, whether looking for things to do around town, getting offers on dining out, or getting recommendations that are personalised to their unique tastes,” said Krish Vitaldevara, director, Google Maps.
As part of this update, seven new tabs have been added to the “Explore” tab — restaurants, petrol pumps, ATMs, offers, shopping, hotels and chemists. Google said that 20 million users were engaging with the Explore feature in Maps on a monthly basis. The “Offers” feature will allow users to find deals and discounts at restaurants in 11 Indian cities — Delhi, Mumbai, Bengaluru, Pune, Chennai, Kolkata, Goa, Ahmedabad, Jaipur, Chandigarh, and Hyderabad.
This is an India first feature which will be rolled out to other markets globally, but is currently available only for Android devices. The Offer feature is being launched in partnership with online table reservation company EazyDiner. Initially available for offers at 4,000 restaurants, more categories and partners will be added soon.
The “For You” tab will provide users information on trending places, restaurants and other recommendations tailored to their interests. This feature will use the a machine learning parameter called “Your Match” score to combine what Google Maps knows about millions of users such as the restaurants they like or cuisines they have liked or places they have visited.
There is also the option to “Follow” a business in the For You tab, to keep updated with the new offers or new products that the business may introduce and so on. This feature is like a Twitter or Facebook “Follow” feature which lets a user see updates, news and events posted by a business, for example an upcoming food festival at their favourite restaurant.