Google Maps has introduced an India-first 'Stay Safer' feature for users that will alert and notify users travelling in taxis and auto-rickshaws when their vehicle goes off-route. The feature will also allow users to share the live status of their trips with family and friends, Google said in a statement. Indian users will be able to use the new feature on their Android phones with the latest version of Google Maps, it added.
"Through our extensive research across India, we found that a lot of people limit their mobility due to safety-related concerns. To address this, we are launching another India-first feature that will deliver a more relevant and reliable experience to our users," Google Maps Product Manager Amanda Bishop said.
She added that the company is committed to bringing more experiences like this to India and beyond.
After searching for a destination and getting directions, users can enable the feature by selecting the 'get off-route alerts' option.
If the driver deviates more than 0.5 km from the Google Maps suggested route, the phone will buzz with a prominent notification, and users can tap it to see where they are compared to the original route.
Then, users can choose to share the live trip with friends and family directly from that screen to help them keep track of the journey.