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Google adds new features in Google Maps for Bangladeshi riders

  • Published at 04:51 pm July 16th, 2019
Google adds new features in Google Maps for Bangladeshi riders
State Minister for ICT Division Zunaid Ahmed Palak attends a launching event of Google Maps' new Bangla features, at a Dhaka hotel on Tuesday Courtesy

The new features include navigation cues in Bangla, and smart generation of journey time estimates, as well as suggested routes for motorcycle riders.

Google has launched several new features to Google Maps for the convenience of Bangladeshi citizens at a launching event at a Dhaka hotel yesterday.

The new features include navigation cues in Bangla, and smart generation of journey time estimates, as well as suggested routes for motorcycle riders.

Zunaid Ahmed Palak, state minister for ICT Division, attended the event as a chief guest.

Krish Vitaldevara, director product management Google Maps; Anal Ghosh, senior program manager, Google Maps (South Asia); Bickey Russell, business and operations lead, Google and Jessica Bayern, business development and operations, Google were also present at the time.

From now on, better estimation of journey duration and suggested routes best suited for bike riders will be available on Google Maps along with navigation cues in Bangla.

As the popularity of ride-sharing services increased, everyone now will have the option of double-checking their commute and sharing the trip with friends and family, as a security feature.

This safety feature will trigger an audible alert if there is more than 0.5km deviation from the suggested route.

Google Maps now features a new navigation mode for motorcycle riders. Motorcycles also have specific needs. They can take routes that cars cannot take such as narrow roads and alleys.

There are also some roads (e.g. highways) where two-wheelers are not allowed. Motorcycles often move at different speeds than that of cars.

Earlier riders had to mentally calculate estimated times of arrival based on a combination of walking and driving routes, but the new feature will deliver more accurate travel time based on machine learning models that reflect motorcycle speeds and routes.

Zunaid said: "Google and its services such as Maps have become an integral part of our daily lives in Bangladesh, helping us search for places, getting directions and avoiding traffic for millions of citizens every day. The availability of voice navigation in Bangla, integrating safety features, and the launch of the motorcycle mode will further contribute towards increasing access to the benefits of these technologies for our fellow Bangladeshis across the socio-economic spectrum."

Krish commented: "We want to provide the most local and relevant experience to meet people's needs so we hope that by providing a customized experience for motorcycles, adding Bangla voice navigation, and providing an extra option for commuter safety makes getting around Bangladesh easier and more helpful."

Since January 2018, Google has added more than 50,000km of roads, along with 8 million buildings and more than 600,000 points of interests on Google Maps across Bangladesh.

The new features are now available to Android users in Bangladesh using the latest version of Google Maps.