Scan for COVID-19 Hotspots in Google Maps
In its latest update to one of the best all-round travel apps out there, Google has added a COVID-19 layer to both iOS and Android Maps app.
Following on from the alerts and notifications Google has already built-in for when you are out and about using public transport, the new layer helps you plan any journey ahead of time.
The data powering the new layer comes from “multiple authoritative sources” as Google describes them. These include:
- Johns Hopkins University
- The New York Times
- Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation
This week, we’re introducing the COVID layer in Maps, a tool that shows critical information about COVID-19 cases in an area so you can make more informed decisions about where to go and what to do.Google Maps
How to use COVID-19 Layer in Google Maps
Google began rolling out the new layer from the 23rd September, so make sure your app is the latest version.
Open the Google Maps app on your device and press on the layers icon, usually found in the top right corner of the map view.
It looks like an angled square with an arrow below it.
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A new slide will appear from the bottom, over the map, with a number of options. In the Map Details section you will find a new option called COVID-19 Info.
Select the COVID-19 Layer option for it to appear on Google Maps and close the pop-up.
Once back in the map, you may need to zoom out slightly, and Google Maps will now have a colour coded layer over your region and country.
How to Read the Data
Once applied the COVID-19 Layer shows a colour coded overlay of a 7-day average number of cases per 100,000.
The system is as follows:
- Grey // Less than 1 case
- Yellow // 1-10 cases
- Orange // 10-20 cases
- Dark Orange // 20-30 cases
- Red // 30-40 cases
- Dark Red // 40+ cases
Along with the colour coding, the exact number will be shown along with an icon to demonstrate if that area is increasing or decreasing. Again, based on the 7-day average.
You’ll need to apply the layer each time you open the app, I assume so it can pull the latest averages.
Join the Conversation
Google Maps is any travellers best app, and the new COVID-19 Layer is a great addition.
Do you rely on the Google Maps app? What is your favourite feature?
Is there something it doesn’t do you’d like to see Google add?
Comment below or join the conversation on Twitter.
Visit support.google.com/maps for further information.