Google Adds New EV Features to Google Maps

The company announced a number of new tools to help drivers find chargers.

April 19, 2024

Google announced new features in its Maps apps that are designed to help EV drivers find charging stations, which are expected to roll out in “the coming months.”

According to the Washington Post, the updates will include a tool to help drivers find chargers with real-time information about availability and charging speed, help find charging stops on long road trips and offer detailed instructions on finding chargers in parking lots and garages.

Some features will use artificial intelligence, such as the tool designed to help navigate lots and garages to locate a charger. The app will use “AI-powered summaries in Google Maps that describe a charger’s specific location based on helpful information from user reviews” posted in the Maps app, according to Google.

Google will now prompt users for more details about their experience when leaving a review, like the type of plug they used and how long they waited.

Other features will be available to the people who drive EVs first through “Google Built-In,” the company’s driver-assistance software. One will be the ability to see nearby chargers on the in-car map, with real-time port availability and speed. This feature, Google said, will roll out globally.

Google also stated that it wants to help EV drivers plan complex trips in an easier way. The company is expanding the Maps feature in Google Built-In that suggests the best charging station to include multi-stop trips. Now, drivers will be able to plan their stops in advance, with Maps suggesting the best charging stops along the way, based on the battery’s charge level.

According to the Washington Post, these new features from Google are intended to address range anxiety, one of Americans’ top concerns with owning electric vehicles. “Range anxiety remains a significant barrier for EV sales—especially for drivers who don’t own a house,” the Post wrote.

Among those who currently do not drive an EV, the Post said, roughly half said they think that finding a place to charge would be “extremely” or “very” difficult,” citing a 2023 Washington Post-University of Maryland poll.

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