Where did I park my car? Google Maps will soon tell all

21 Mar 2017

Where did I park? Image: Frank Gaertner/Shutterstock

A new feature included on beta versions of Google Maps helps drivers remember where they parked their cars.

Given that it already helps with mapping, route planning, finding parking and many more facets of commuting, it was only a matter of time before Google Maps helped you find your car.

Now, in the latest beta version of the app, it seems the penny has finally dropped.

Seen in version v9.49 (the latest full version is 9.48.2), the new feature is as simple as most Maps tools.

After users finish their commute, they can tap on the blue dot that signifies their current location and they will be presented with an additional option, ‘save your parking’. This joins other options including ‘see places near you’, ‘report blue dot issues’ and the dreaded ‘calibrate blue dot compass’.

This replaces the Google Cards prompt that users could previously work with, which prompted people after trips. However, as it did not necessarily relate to car trips, it wasn’t as effective as, say, Apple’s approach.

Apple uses a clever system involving CarPlay, or Bluetooth. After users disconnect their phone from those car tools, Apple presumes they are parked.

Now, Google Maps is looking at something more accurate, too, with a little help from the user. When you tap on the blue dot to log your parking, you can add extra bits of information, which can often prove pretty handy.

For example, if users paid for parking, then they might have a time limit with which they must abide. After parking, users can key in how long they have left. Other benefits could be logging the floor of the multi-storey carpark users are in.

As it’s Google Maps, pictures can prove helpful, too. Users can upload multiple photos of their parking location: zone, row, notable landmarks etc.

Parking isn’t the only update to Google Maps. Weather predictions for destinations users are heading to are also part of the upgrade.

Car park. Image: Frank Gaertner/Shutterstock

Gordon Hunt was a journalist with Silicon Republic