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I just tried Google's brand new augmented reality Maps on a one mile walk through San Francisco, and I miss it already

Google MapsNick Bastone / Business Insider
  • On Monday, the Google Maps team gave Business Insider the chance to try out its new AR feature for pedestrian maps, which the company first announced at its developer conference last May.
  • The company says the feature is in an “alpha” state and for now, will only be available to “local guides.”
  • Even without a definite public release date, we were anxious to see if AR could actually improve the Google Maps experience.
  • Below we describe what it was like to use the new Google Maps AR feature on the streets of San Francisco.

Anyone visiting a new city knows the confusion of emerging from a subway station and trying to figure out in which direction to turn.

Even with your maps app open, orienting yourself in an unfamiliar place can be difficult and lead to some missteps.

Google believes it has solved the problem using augmented reality technology.

On Monday, the Google Maps team gave Business Insider the chance to try out its new AR feature for pedestrian maps, which the company first teased at its developer conference last May. The team says the feature is in an “alpha” state and for now, will only be available to “local guides” – Google Maps enthusiasts who provide useful product feedback.

Even without a definite public release date, we were anxious to see if AR could actually improve the Google Maps experience.

Here’s what it was like to use the new Google Maps AR feature on the streets of San Francisco:

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