Google Maps expands its eco-navigation feature to 40 more countries

Google announced today that it is expanding its green route options on Google Maps to 40 more countries in Europe. Ecological routes, first introduced to US-based users last year they offer to show more economical routes instead of the fastest ones. Users can see the eco route marked with a leaf label.

To adjust Eco Route settings, users can tap their Google Maps profile picture, go to Settings > Navigation Settings, and then scroll down to Route Options. Users can tap the “Preference for fuel-efficient routes” option to turn fuel-efficient routes on or off.

The company also launched a new feature for car owners to select their vehicle’s engine type to receive personalized suggestions for fuel-efficient routes best suited to the engine. In the coming weeks, users will be able to navigate to the settings mentioned above and select the engine type – petrol or gas, diesel, hybrid or electric vehicle (EV) – for navigation.

Option to choose an engine for green routes in Google Maps Image Credits: Google

“This technology is made possible by insights from the US Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) and data from the European Environment Agency. By combining this information with Google Maps driving trends, we were able to develop advanced machine learning models trained on the most popular types of drivers in a given region,” the company said in a blog post.

Google claims that after introducing green routes in the US and Canada, it has managed to save carbon emissions equivalent to 100,000 cars.

Over the years, Google has tried to encourage people to use greener navigation options by introducing new features to Google Maps. In 2018, the company presented for the first time EV charging station information to the app. In July, the company launched bike navigation features with details like the amount of vehicular traffic and the types of roads along the route.

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