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Google Maps Rolling Out ‘Area Busyness’ Feature to Help You Avoid Visiting Crowded Places

The feature was announced last month and is now rolling out to all Google Maps users.

Google Maps Rolling Out ‘Area Busyness’ Feature to Help You Avoid Visiting Crowded Places

Google Maps has started labelling crowded places with “Busy area”

  • Google Maps for Android and iOS is getting the new feature
  • It uses busyness trends to highlight crowded places
  • Google Maps users can tap the “Busy area” label to get busyness details

Google Maps has started rolling out a feature which will highlight the busiest areas of your city or town. Called ‘Area Busyness,' the new offering is designed to help you avoid crowds and instantly spot whether your neighbourhood or a part of your city has more than the usual number of footfalls. The feature works across platforms including Android and iOS and can work for areas that have restaurants, shops, and recreational places such as museums. Users in India and around the world can start experiencing the Area Busyness feature after getting the updated version of Google Maps on their devices.

Announced last month, Area Busyness on Google Maps combines live busyness trends to show the busiest places of a particular city or town. The busyness trends are claimed to be based on the aggregated and anonymised location history data that Google collects from people who have opted for it from their Google Account.

“This data is instrumental in calculating how busy a place typically is for every hour of the week,” Google explained in a blog post.

The area that is near its busiest state is labelled “Busy area” on Google Maps. You need to tap it once to see a chart showing how busy the area is at different times of day, along with a directory of restaurants, shops, and recreational places (like a museum) within it.

google maps area busyness update image gadgets 360 Google Maps

Google Maps has started showing "Busy area" labels in India and around the world


Google confirmed to Gadgets 360 that the Area Busyness feature is now rolling out to all users globally and India is a part of the rollout.

Busyness information has been a part of Google Maps since 2016. You would be able to find that by tapping a particular place on the maps. Also, Google Maps last year introduced indicators including “Usually as busy as it gets” and “Usually not too busy” under location names.

However, Google has now expanded its efforts towards that directly by starting to highlight busy areas directly on the virtual maps. The update also comes amid the emergence of Omicron variant of coronavirus, which is restricting people to stay indoors and avoid visiting crowded places.

What are the best phones of 2021? We discuss this on Orbital, the Gadgets 360 podcast. Orbital is available on Spotify, Gaana, JioSaavn, Google Podcasts, Apple Podcasts, Amazon Music and wherever you get your podcasts.
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Further reading: Google Maps, Area Busyness, Google
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