What you need to know
- An update to Google Maps makes it easier to find charging stations for electric vehicles while on a trip.
- The update lets EV owners quickly view accepted payment methods for charging stations.
- Volvo and Polestar vehicles will are currently the only EVs with Google Maps built-in.
When going on long road trips, you should always make sure to have one of the best travel chargers on you. But owners of electric vehicles have another charging problem to worry about, and "range anxiety" can still be an issue for many people who fear a lack of access to available charging stations. Google Maps is hoping to address this in its latest update coming to select EVs.
In the new update, Google Maps will make it easier for EVs that support Android Auto. to map out a route without having to worry about reaching a charging station. Using new routing algorithms developed by Google's AI team, EV owners will be given the most efficient route based on the location of charging stations relative to the car's battery capacity and levels.
And because no two charging stations are the same, the selected route will account for the duration of the charge and select stations that will ultimately decrease the amount of time you're on the road. Google Maps will even show you how long each charge will take and give you an ETA on your trip.
If the commute requires just one charge stop, EV owners will be able to select their preferred station from a list of charging stations along the way. And for added convenience, Google is making it easy to see what payment methods are accepted at charging stations, a feature that is now available in 12 countries in Europe with support for more coming soon.
These new features are coming to electric vehicles with Google Maps built-in, which for now means the Polestar 2 and Volvo XC40 Recharge, but Google suggests more are in the works.
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Derrek is a long-time Nokia and LG fanboy who loves astronomy, videography, and sci-fi movies. When he's not working, he's most likely working out or smoldering at the camera.