Google has announced that it will be improving the Google Maps app by enabling real-time location sharing. The company is rolling out new apps for Android and iOS which will allow users to temporarily share their locations with friends, family, or colleagues - anyone in their Google contacts. Those who are invited to view your location can monitor your location and track your ETA in their own mobile app, or in Google Maps via a web browser.
To get a good grasp of the overall functionality and usefulness of location sharing, it's worth a watch of the brief video above. In the video you can see someone arrange a surprise birthday bash for a friend. At the same time the unsuspecting friend meets up with someone who allows his ETA to be tracked. Everyone can thus know when the birthday girl will arrive at the house.
It's very easy to share your location in the new Google Maps app, and importantly it's quick and intuitive to adjust the sharing time length and toggle those who can monitor your location. For people interested in your ETA, for example, trip progress can be checked upon and routes can be shared directly from the app too - thanks to the 'Share Trip' option. Trip sharing, unlike the time-based location sharing, automatically ends when you reach the destination.
Google hopes its new map-based tools will be useful to people and help people with questions such as "Where are you now?" and "What's your ETA?" The updated real-time user location sharing enabled app is "rolling out soon worldwide".