Google has updated its Maps feature with a new tool that shows whether a bar or shop is busy in real-time.
The move follows Google’s previous ‘Popular Times’ feature that lets users see the popular times of businesses and destinations in Search and Maps.
Google also says it is adding the ability to see how long people usually stay at a given location as well as more specific business hours.
The first addition gives a heads up on just how busy the place you’re considering going to currently is.
Secondly, Google is introducing a feature to Maps and Search that will let users better plan an itinerary (see below).
The feature uses anonymised location data from other Google users, as well as searches, to analyse how busy a place is at that moment.
With a new “Live” tag, Maps now displays a red overlay on top of the historic busy period data showing whether it really is busy or quiet as usual at the moment.
The feature is being rolled out ahead of the busy Black Friday shopping period, but could equally be useful for checking out whether a particular bar or cinema is packed among other venues with variable busy times.