It’s a pretty nifty implementation. Open the side menu or tap on the blue dot indicating where you are, and you’ll see a new “Share location” option. Pick a few people to share with, and they’ll be able to see where you are in real time right on their own Maps app.
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You can set your location to be shared permanently with certain people, or set a time limit. You can also share your progress while navigating, and have the option to send your location as a link in messaging apps, too.
It’s one of the more genuinely useful features Google has added of late. There are several uses that I can already think of:
- Checking to make sure your friend arrived home safe after a late night out
- You’re visiting town for a couple of days, and want to let your friends know what you’re up to without having to constantly update them on your location
- Making sure no one gets lost when traveling in large groups
Here’s Google’s own explainer:
Granted, those are things you could previously do with third-party apps – and Apple has Find My Friends – but having it built into the most popular maps app around is certainly convenient.