Science

Google makes navigation easier for Indian users

Google makes navigation easier for Indian users

This feature enables you to contribute to the Maps experience from the Maps.

Coming back to the "self-functioning chaos called India", postcodes represent nothing more than the nearest post office, which in many cases can be kilometers away. While Google Maps in itself has been a disruptor in thousands of industries, Google Plus Codes is going to be the next great thing that changes how people navigate in the developing world. This will be handy for users when they don't have a specific address. Now, with the advent of smartphones, we rely on Google Maps to help us reach our destination without having to stop-by and get instructions from anyone. The main problem that the company faces in India is with residential addresses, which do not follow a fixed format and may vary from region to region. The other reality is that millions of people and places in India are hard to locate - especially those in remote areas. "We are deeply committed to helping find solutions to these challenges", Suren Ruhela, Director, Google Maps Next Billion Users, told reporters here.

You don't need to use the first four digits of a plus code if you're not searching an global location or someplace far off.

Other benefits pointed out by Google state that "Plus Codes" is free of any licensing codes, that they will work regardless of whether user is online or offline, that the system independent of borders - ensuring that it works in "disputed territories", that they can be printed as a grid on paper and finally, that it's not limited to the internet or digital devices. It describes the area roughly of the size of a half basketball court, around 14 x 14 meters.

Google makes navigation easier for Indian users
Google makes navigation easier for Indian users

Remembering the plus code for an area is much simpler than burning your brain circuits while recalling the satellite coordinates. Even developers can use the codes to incorporate in their applications. An additional accuracy of up to 3 x 3 meters can be achieved. A complete plus code (also referred as global code) contains ten characters in total, with a '+' character before the last two characters. To get started with the Plus Codes, enter them as a search query on Google or simply put them on Google maps. While some addresses are well defined by street names and house numbers that are easy to find, others can be long-winded and hard to locate. Being able to precisely navigate without local knowledge is hard. Places that are close together share similar plus codes, while the system is identificable by the "+" symbol in every address.

Lastly, Google has rolled out support for voice navigation in Maps in six more Indian languages, which include Bengali, Gujarati, Kannada, Telugu, Tamil, and Malayalam. The address becomes searchable after a formal verification.

Apart from that, Google has also introduced 'Smart Address Search' which uses different pieces of information in an address to help users find the location they are looking for.