Skip to content

Google Maps Expands Navigation Capabilities to Include Indoor Tunnels

Enhance your tunnel navigation experience! Google Maps now utilizes Bluetooth beacons for precise GPS tracking, eliminating confusion. Update your app for seamless tunnel directions.

Navigating Tunnels Made Easy: Google Maps Enhances GPS Accuracy with Bluetooth Beacons

Navigating through tunnels with GPS directions can be a perplexing experience, often leading to chaotic moments as you emerge into the daylight. Google Maps is set to transform this with a groundbreaking feature that employs Bluetooth beacons for enhanced accuracy, especially in GPS-challenged areas.

Spotted by SmartDroid, this innovation allows the Android version of Google Maps to leverage Bluetooth beacons to track your location where traditional GPS signals may struggle. These beacons transmit Bluetooth signals, providing location data to your phone, a technology already supported by Google-owned Waze. The app then combines this information with your device's mobile connectivity to offer real-time traffic data, mirroring the performance of a typical GPS connection.

To enable this feature, head to your Navigation Settings on Google Maps. Select your profile, choose Settings > Navigation Settings, scroll to the bottom, toggle on "Bluetooth tunnel beacons," and grant permission when prompted.

However, the catch is that this feature functions only if the tunnel you're passing through is equipped with Bluetooth beacons. Waze, which already implements this technology, has partnerships in major cities globally, including New York City, Chicago, Boston, Paris, Rio de Janeiro, Brussels, and more. While it's unclear if Google Maps will use the same beacons, both apps being owned by Google, we've reached out to the company for clarification.

Users have reported glimpses of this feature in October 2023, and now it seems to be widely rolling out. For iOS users, the availability on Google Maps remains uncertain, but for Android users, this enhancement ensures a smoother and more accurate navigation experience through tunnels.