Google has added a new feature to Maps that lets people see the spiking COVID-19 cases for a particular area. Google Maps now lets people see the number of COVID cases per 100,000 people with a label indicating the rise or fall of coronavirus. The search engine giant informed through a blog post that users can now see the trend, and number of COVID cases for the last seven days in a given area. The company said it would start rolling out the functionality worldwide on Maps for both Android and iOS this week.
According to the official blog post from the tech giant itself, the company said, “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.”. In countries like the US, you can see the information down to the state and country level. However, the feature is of limited use in other countries as it provides only the national data.
How Google Maps COVID Feature Works
To use the feature and see the COVID cases nearby, first launch the Google Maps app on your device. Once you open the maps application, click on the Layers icon at the top right-hand corner of your phone screen. Select the ‘COVID 19 Info’ box to open the layer for displaying the information about COVID-19 in any area. The color-coding makes it easier for you to see the difference in the density of new coronavirus cases.
Where Does The Data Come From
According to Google, the data comes from multiple authoritative sources such as Johns Hopkins, the New York Times, World Health Organization, other public health agencies, and Wikipedia. The company says that these sources already power the information on COVID cases in Google Search. Now it is expanding this data to Google Maps also.