Google Maps releases its predictive travel API to devs

Google Maps releases its predictive travel API to devs

Google Maps is good at telling you roughly how long it will take you to get to your next destination — even days or weeks in advance. But in a blog post released today, it announced that it is bringing that power to its developers.

Called “predictive travel,” devs will now have access to this powerful tool in order to make their own apps stronger.

Predictive travel time uses historical time-of-day and day-of-week traffic data to estimate travel times at a future date. This makes it easier than ever to predict how long it will take to get somewhere and suggest the best route even when the departure time is far in the future.

Because traffic can vary even minute to minute, Google will provide the ability for devs to create parameters of how the predictive travel feature will look. For example, devs can make sure the model is “optimistic” to provide a best guess when a user might arrive at the destination in question, or “pessimistic” to temper expectations and allow for logistics.

For those who would rather be plain, the “best_guess” model factors in both route length and traffic conditions.

Predictive travel is available to devs who have signed up for the “Standard Plan” for Google Maps APIs.

Predicting the Future with Google Maps APIs [Google Geo Developers Blog]

Read next: Reddit replaces shadowbans with suspensions to punish spammers and trolls