Monday, 21 October, 2019

Google Maps for blind people improves thanks to the new voice guidance

The staff kitchen in Google's Tokyo office overlooking the Tokyo Tower in the Shiba-koen district of Minato. The view of Tokyo's skyline is visible outside of the window where an employee is leaning against a pillar gazing outside. There are Google Maps rolling out detailed voice guidance for walking directions
Emmett Howard | 12 October, 2019, 02:05

According to Google, it started rolling out the new voice guidance today to iOS and Android devices.

Google Maps has up to date its voice steerage system particularly so that folks with lowered blindness or visibility can transfer extra independently.

Google is proud that these features are not only for people with vision impairments, but they have also been built, from the ground-up, by such people.

Google is adding some improvements to the voice guidance in Maps, specifically aimed at people with impaired vision.

Wakana Sugiyama, a Business Analyst living in Tokyo who is also legally blind talked about the features in a special post on the Google blog and she also worked as an early advisor and tester for this project. To activate voice guidance simply select a destination for navigation, select walking and there will be a new option to enable "Detailed voice guidance".

But it doesn't mean that this feature can not be used or helpful for people who are totally normal.

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Sugiyama explained: "With this feature, I can navigate the streets of Tokyo with more comfort and confidence".

The new technology isn't limited to the visually impaired: Google hopes it can also help folks struggling to put their phone down and have a screen-free experience. Maps will tell the user things like how far away the next turn is, which direction they are walking, and when they are approaching intersections.

It even identifies large intersections, warning folks to cross with added caution. "And if I accidentally leave my route, I'll get a spoken notification that I'm being rerouted".

Detailed voice guidance will soon be available in more countries. Navigation in unfamiliar places remains one of the biggest challenges for those people, so the Google Maps team has made a decision to take the opportunity to roll out detailed voice guidance for walking directions.

Right this moment is the flip of Google Maps, an software that everyone knows and that helps us transfer round daily.

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