Google Adds Eco-Friendly Options to Maps

Including fuel efficient driving routes and Lite Navigation

Google is rolling out new eco-friendly options to its Maps app by showing drivers more fuel-efficient routes and other tools.

The update was introduced during the company's Sustainable with Google event on Wednesday, where it introduced its planned response to climate change. In addition to the new eco-friendly routes, Maps will have a new Lite Navigation mode for cyclists, and new shared bike and scooter information, according to a post on Google's blog, The Keyword.

Couple mapping out route

Dean Mitchell/Getty Images

The eco-friendly option seeks to optimize the travel route for low fuel consumption, with Google claiming it may "prevent over one million tons of carbon emissions per year."

This feature is possible thanks to a combination of artificial intelligence and information from the US Department of Energy.  Google points out that the most fuel-efficient route may not be the fastest, but users can switch between the two options and create a route that works best for them.

Eco-friendly routes are currently rolling out in the US on Android and iOS devices, with plans to expand to other countries next year.

The new Lite Navigation feature allows cyclists to quickly see important details and keep their eyes on the road.

Users can glance and see trip progression, ETA, and even route elevation on Google Maps. Lite Navigation will roll out to Android and iOS over the coming months.

Checking out a shared bike

Cavan Images/Getty Images

The final Maps update allows users to find nearby bike and scooter share stations in over 300 cities around the world, and see how many are available at that time.

Google worked alongside ride-sharing services like Donkey Republic to make the feature possible. However, the post neglects to mention when this feature will roll out.

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