Google Maps has announced that it is piloting a new feature that will allow people to follow select Local Guides for recommendations on places and experiences. Initially, the new feature will only be available in nine cities across the globe.
These include London, New York, San Francisco, Tokyo, Sao Paulo, Bangkok, Delhi, Osaka, and Mexico City.
Olivia T, the Maps Community manager wrote in a blog post, "we're thrilled to announce that we're piloting a new in-app feature in Google Maps that will allow people to discover new places with help from Local Guides just like you." It was noted that Google will be selecting the Local Guides based on things such as how often they share recommendations, as well as the quality and frequency of contributions on Maps.
With this new feature in place, those exploring these cities will see features Local Guides in the For You tab in the Google Maps app. When users choose to follow a Local Guide, the guide's recommendations will be more visible for the user.
Earlier this year, Google Maps unveiled three new 'India-centric' features. This included an India-inspired Explore tab, a new For You experience and a new section that highlighted dining offers. The new Explore tab would feature shortcuts that would be populated based on the top queries of people in India. These would include restaurants, petrol pumps, ATMs, etc. Google said that it would use machine learning to automatically identify the top suggestions across cities.
The For You section would feature a curated list of places and activities that the user may like. It would also allow users to follow a business, receive pertinent updates and more. The new Offers section would show deals that could be claimed at restaurants in 11 cities in India.