New Google Maps feature lets you know when friends get home safely

If you’re getting together with family or friends this summer and want to know when everyone arrives, a Google Maps update will help. A new location sharing feature in the Google Maps app will alert you to the whereabouts of friends who already share their location with you.

Google Maps’ new location sharing feature takes some of the guesswork out of knowing when everyone will arrive by notifying you when a friend or family member shows up or leaves a place, as long as they’re already sharing their location with you. This can be useful if you have a teenager heading out of town or if you want to let a friend know that you’ve arrived at your meeting place.

We’ll explain how the new location sharing feature works, how to use it, and when it will be available.

How can you get alerts on Google Maps when friends arrive or leave a location?

When the new feature is available in the Google Maps app on your iPhone or Android, select your profile icon and tap location sharing. Choose the person you want to request location notifications for from the list. Note that she already needs to share her location with you. Then select Add to add an address to receive updates from your friend. You will then choose a designated location as well as when you will be notified (arriving or leaving) and then tap To save.

The person you requested location notifications from will receive an alert that you have added the location. As soon as that person leaves or arrives at the specified location, you will be notified. For example, if your friend has arrived to meet you at a campsite, you will be alerted and can keep an eye on him.

The person will also receive several reminders to let them know they are sharing their location notifications, including a push notification in the Maps app and an email, as well as recurring monthly emails.

Can I disable this Google Maps feature if a friend asks to see when I arrive or leave?

Yup. If you receive an alert that someone wants to be notified when you arrive or leave a location, you can choose to turn it off. Start by clicking the notification on your phone’s lock screen. Then turn off the switch to Allow recipients to add notifications. Touch To switch off Confirm.

You can also block someone from setting notifications completely.

Once you’ve done that, the person will no longer be able to add notifications to let them know when you arrive or leave a specific location. They will also not be notified that you have disabled this feature.

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When can I start using the new Google Maps location sharing feature?

Starting today, the Google Maps location sharing feature update is rolling out to Android and iOS users. If you don’t see it right away, make sure you have the latest version of the app. It may also take a few weeks before you see the new tool.

For more tips, here are six Google Maps tricks to use this weekend. Also, here are eight travel tips from Google to facilitate travel planning.

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