The redesign of Google Maps earlier this year left out one of its most useful features - the ability to create a map with multiple destinations.
But Google has now revealed it is now returning the capability and adding two other useful tools in its latest update.
The changes, which came largely due to user feedback about the new Google Maps services in the last three months, were announced by Florian Goerisch, product manager for Google Maps, in an 9 October post on the Google Lat Long Blog. "Based on your input, we're pleased to announce one of your most requested features - directions for multiple destinations - will begin rolling out today," wrote Goerisch.
The multiple destination capability that was in earlier versions of Google Maps allowed users to plan a trip from point A to point B, then add a point C in as well, making it a fabulous tool for planning a trip to a string of destinations. It helped users plan distances, routes and stops along the way, and its disappearance from the reworked Google Maps earlier this summer was panned by many users on Google+ comment pages.
The resurfacing of the feature is bound to be welcomed by users.
"Whether you're running weekend errands or planning a cross-country tour, you can plot multiple destinations for your trip with ease - now available for driving, walking and biking directions," wrote Goerisch. "Once you've chosen a starting point, click '+' and add stops to your route by typing in the search box or clicking on the map."
Users can also use the feature to find the best route to museums, historic squares and other attractions by dragging and dropping their destinations on the map in any order, he wrote. "And if you're curious before you go, the Views carousel, located in the bottom right corner, is a great way to preview Street View, Photo Tours, and other imagery."
Also added to Google Maps in the latest updates are useful capabilities that allow users to find flight, hotel and restaurant reservations faster while inside the Maps application. "Just search for your departing airport or dining destination, and we'll instantly show your upcoming plans," Goerisch wrote. "Having all your stuff in one place makes it easier to manage your appointment details and plan your commute. This info is available when you're signed into Google, and only you can see it."
That information can then be accessed by users on their Android phones or iPhones, where they will be able to see their recent search histories on the Google Maps app. So far, this feature is presently rolling out to Maps users in the United States and is available in English only, wrote Goerisch.
The other new feature for Google Maps is the ability to now find upcoming events on a card within the service, wrote Goerisch. "Search for Radio City Music Hall, the O2 Arena, or your favourite local performance venues, and click on the Upcoming Events card to see a schedule of concerts, sports matches, and other events happening near you. Or if you're new to an area, start with 'music venues.'"