Skip to main content

Upcoming Google Maps features uncovered: UI tweaks, ‘first mile’ transit, more

Google seems to always be working on new features for its various services, including Google Maps. Today, Jane Wong posted to Twitter a bunch of new features coming to Maps — here’s a breakdown.

In this series of tweets, several changes coming to Google Maps are detailed. Some are pretty small, but others may have a pretty big impact on usability. Perhaps one that many commuters will find handy — you know, once life goes back to normal — is a “first-mile” option for connecting to public transit.

For many commuters, there’s a small trip to get to a nearby bus, subway, or train station. With this new Maps filter, Google would allow users to pick and choose what types of transportation they’d use for their “first mile” on a daily commute. Technically, these could probably be used for the “last mile” as well. The options included are car, bike, rickshaw, motorcycle, or a ride-sharing service such as Uber or Lyft.

On the note of Uber, Google Maps is also preparing to give better insights on ride fares through at least Uber. With this, Google Maps would link to a ride-sharing service and share the user’s route, offering immediate and accurate ride fares within Google Maps itself. Presumably, that would also be available for other ride-sharing platforms. In a related change, Maps is also apparently working on tighter integration for “Bay Wheels,” a bike-sharing service in San Francisco.

There are also a couple of UI changes Google is preparing to make to Maps. For one, the search bar at the top of the app may soon be rounded off with the user’s profile picture on the right-hand side and a Google Maps logo on the far left. It’s a slight change, but it looks really nice! There are also some changes to the “place” cards which include showing common words in reviews for that location as seen below.

It’s unclear when any of these features will roll out publicly, but they all seem like welcome improvements to the platform.

Update: Article has been modifed to remove mention of the “OK Google” hotword on iOS. As it turns out, that feature isn’t new and is present in at least the past two versions of Google Maps for iOS.

More on Google Maps:

FTC: We use income earning auto affiliate links. More.

You’re reading 9to5Google — experts who break news about Google and its surrounding ecosystem, day after day. Be sure to check out our homepage for all the latest news, and follow 9to5Google on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn to stay in the loop. Don’t know where to start? Check out our exclusive stories, reviews, how-tos, and subscribe to our YouTube channel



Avatar for Ben Schoon Ben Schoon

Ben is a writer and video producer for 9to5Google.

Find him on Twitter @NexusBen. Send tips to or encrypted to

Ben Schoon's favorite gear