Google has expanded some Maps features to Canada for the first time, specifically ‘Parking Difficulty’ icons within the company’s iOS app.
Parking Difficulty was first launched exclusively in the U.S. back in January, but now it’s available in Montreal, Toronto and Vancouver, plus other select cities worldwide.
Here’s how Google describes Parking Difficulty–which is based on historical data “with a little machine learning magic”:
To see how hard it might be to park where you’re headed, just get directions to your destination and look for the parking difficulty icon in the directions card at the bottom of the screen. Parking difficulties range from limited to medium to easy and are based on historical parking data with a little machine learning magic.
We gave this a quick test and it is indeed working in Canada. All you have to do is search for directions and you’ll see a parking icon beside your route distance. In our case, heading to Robson Square in Vancouver shows there is Limited parking, which is definitely correct.
When you tap on your directions list, Google Maps also notes Parking Difficulty so you’re aware here too:
Other cities which have gained Parking Difficulty updates worldwide include: Alicante, Amsterdam, Copenhagen, Barcelona, Cologne, Darmstadt, Dusseldorf, London, Madrid, Malaga, Manchester, Milan, Moscow, Munich, Paris, Prague, Rio de Janeiro, Rome, Sao Paulo, Stockholm, Stuttgart, and Valencia.
Today’s announcements also included a Find Parking feature, only available for Android users in the U.S., allowing them to find parking garages and lots near destinations. Expect this to debut for iOS users and outside the U.S. sometime soon, too.