How to use Google Maps Live View features

Google Maps Live View uses augmented reality to help make walking directions more accessible and dynamic on both Android phones and iPhones. Once you know where to find it, Live View is relatively easy to use. But you may not know what features are available or where you’ll get the most out of the Live View experience. Here’s how to use Google Maps Live View.

How to follow directions with Google Maps Live View

1. On your Android phone, iPhone, or iPad, open Google Maps and search for a destination. 

2. Tap Directions and Walking view.

3. Next to the blue Start button, find and tap the Live View button. 

4. “Enable camera access” on iOS or “Allow Maps to take pictures and record video while using the app” on Android.

5. As prompted, point your phone camera around to locate your surroundings, focusing on buildings, landmarks, and/or street signs.

Once Live View recognizes your position, it will augment your surroundings with arrows to guide you in the right direction. Hold the phone vertically to continue to use Live View, or swap to horizontal to return to 2D map view.

If you don’t want to use the Directions tool, and simply want to check where a nearby restaurant is, select it on the map and then swipe down the informational menu that appears to show a full map view; the Live View button should appear in the bottom right. Tap it and point your phone at your surroundings.

Doing this will enable your phone to show you which direction the landmark is, how far away it is, and if it’s somewhere above ground level. You can then switch to Directions mode if necessary.

Use Live View to orient yourself or improve tracking

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Google will hold a Search and Maps AI event next week

The company hasn’t shared many details about it just yet

Google has shared that it will host an online event on February 8 at 8:30 am ET, called “Live from Paris.” In the 45-minute event, the company will talk about how it will use AI to reshape search and how people interact with information, as the company told Android Police. It will be livestreamed on YouTube.

Google specifies in the YouTube description that the event will revolve around “Search, Maps, and beyond.” Further, exploring and interacting with information is supposed to become “more natural and intuitive than ever before to find what you need.”


The timing of the event is interesting, given that Google I/O is only about three months away when it takes place in its usual slot sometime in the beginning or middle of May. The developer conference itself is also rumored to primarily feature new AI features, with up to 20 to be released this year.

It’s possible that Google wants to react fast to AI advancements from other companies. OpenAI’s ChatGPT, a natural language chatbot, has taken the internet by storm, and Microsoft has announced that it will bring the tech behind it to its search engine Bing.

There are reports that ChatGPT caused an internal code red alert at Google, with founders Sergey Brin and Larry Page summoned for an emergency meeting on how to accelerate Google’s own AI projects. Google is reportedly now pushing internal teams tasked with overseeing fairness and ethics in AI to approve projects faster.

The last few years, Google made clear that it is heavily investing in natural language AI, with its own general purpose chatbot LaMDA making headlines last year with a now-fired Google employee claiming that it was sentient, which the company

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