Google has just updated its Google Maps software to include one of the most wanted features on a service like this, live transit. On Google Maps, you can now get live schedules for train departure times, bus and tram schedules, and more. But this is not for the whole world, the service is available only in the New York City, the Salt Lake City, and Washington DC for now. But Google will definitely add more cities to the list pretty soon.
“We want to make sure you have access to the most comprehensive, accurate, and useful information when you’re on the go — and that includes public transportation,” Soufi Esmaeilzadeh, Google Maps partnership development manager, said in a blog post today. “With these updates — part of the millions of live transit schedule updates we process every day — you get instant access to the latest information right on Google Maps, making trip planning a cinch.”
CNET writes, “Seven of New York’s subway lines now have the live departure time feature, while various tram and bus lines in the greater Salt Lake City area have it. Washington doesn’t yet have live departure information, but users can see live service alerts, delays, and scheduled track work.”
Google says that it has a lot of information about a lot of countries around the world. If you want the official numbers, Google now has transit information for 25 countries around the world which travel fairs for local taxies and trains, estimated travel times for local destinations, pick up locations, and much more for over 800 cities.
The search engine giant has been working on this live transit system for quite a few years now. In 2008, the company offered live transit information online for New York, and in 2009, it added voice search to this mix. And recently, the company started providing live transit updates to a few cities in the United States and Europe.