Google Maps is getting a new update called the Wildfire Layer that will help users investigate wildfires and gain access to better navigation. With the Wildfire Layer feature, users can view the latest details about multiple fires at once, which will allow them to make informed decisions during emergencies. This feature will work on the basis of satellite data. Google is also bringing in Tree Canopy Insights to track green cover and identify places at greatest risk from rising temperatures. Additionally, the platform is releasing an address maker app to identify locations without a formal address. The Wildfire Layer feature will be available to Google Maps users around the world on Android, iOS and desktop starting this October.
Through a blog post on Wednesday, September 29, Google detailed all the new features that Google Maps is bringing to its users. The new Wildfire Layer feature is an extension of the wildfire extent map launched last year in the US. It helps to understand the approximate size and location of the fire from their equipment. The wildfire layer will provide details about multiple fires at once. And when the feature is live on your Google Maps app, you can tap on it (the red area with a pin) to see important details about the fire, such as its containment, the number of acres burned, and the last When was the information given?
In the US, Google Maps has taken help from the National Interagency Fire Center (NIFC) to add more details to the feature. Google says it plans to expand the data to more countries, starting with Australia later this year. The Wildfire layer will be available to Google Maps users on Android worldwide starting this week. iOS and desktop users will start rolling it out this October.
Google is also releasing Tree Canopy Insights in more than 100 cities around the world, including Guadalajara, London, Sydney and Toronto, in the first half of 2022.
Tree Canopy Insights uses aerial imagery and advanced AI (Artificial Intelligence) capabilities to identify heat islands (devoid of green cover) that are at high risk of rising temperatures. Google says local governments can use free tree canopy data to get information about planting trees to increase shade and reduce heat. Google tested the feature in Los Angeles.
With the new free Address Maker app, Google Maps is supporting people who live in places without a formal address. With the free Address Maker app, people can now use an open course system called Plus Codes to create unique, functioning addresses from the Android app. The six-digit codes can be located on Google Maps and will be navigable. Address builder helps organizations to assign addresses and connect missing roads. Governments and NGOs in The Gambia, Kenya, India, South Africa and the US are already using Address Maker, the company said.