New York Times had an awesome article about Google basically trying to make you do zero work when it comes to traveling. The problem is it’s kind of long and not all that easily digestible and some of us don’t have the subscriptions necessary to read it. That’s where I come in. I am here to dumb things down and tighten things up. I’m like a personal trainer training someone who doesn’t understand fitness talk. Or I’m just trying to be the Google of article iteration. Either way.
Google Technology (For those with a Google smart phone)
This badboy lets you point your camera at an object and instantly receive information on that said object. Imagine you are traveling in Paris and there is that big tower in the middle of the city and you have no idea what it is. Pull out your Google Lens an BAM, it’s the Eiffel tower and here is a brief history of it. It also works for movies—watch the trailer, read reviews, check the synopsis. A similar function, of course with variation, for books and artwork in a museums as well. It can also scan barcodes and follow URLs but hey, this is about travel!
Time to throw away that Rosetta Stone CD that’s been on your shelf for ten years. Google Pixel Buds is a game changer for nights out on the town in a foreign city. These are headphones that will translate, in real-time, over 40 different languages. So while someone is talking, the headphones translate what is being said, right into your ears. Remember all those girls at the bar that wouldn’t talk to you when you were traveling abroad because they didn’t speak English? Well they were lying, they knew English. You were just hammered and that’s not attractive to anyone in any country. But now, if they tell you they don’t speak English, you can just use your Google Pixel Buds instead.
In all seriousness, this is a real freaking translator. Again, you are going to need the Pixel phone as well as the translator app for this. How it works is you speak into the microphone attached to the earbuds, then your phone will speak out loud to the person you are trying to converse with, and then the person will speak into your phone and you’ll hear it through the earbud. The whole conversation is transcribed on the phone screen. Sounds potentially awkward but hey, it’s better than pulling out that little book and looking for a way to ask for a bathroom.
Google Flight (Accessible To All):
Recap of All the New Features on Google Flights:
Google Flights has changed the way we find and book airfare. While their search engine wasn’t the first on the block, they have quietly made so many improvements that are ground breaking for people who are booking a lot of flights. Some of their newest features:
- Using historical data and machine learning algorithms, Flights will tell you if your flight will be delayed on their own accord, not the airlines. Don’t worry, it has to be 80 percent sure it is correct before you are notified.
- It’ll now tell you the restrictions on that budget airline that you are forced to take—for example, whether you can choose your seat, or if there is a carry on fee. You know, all those things they add on to make your cheap flight not so cheap.
- It will tell you the best time to book a flight, again using machine learning technology that will analyze historic data. After you choose a destination, you can receive tips about whether a price will drop in the future or if it is lower than normal or if it is cheaper to fly in and out on a different day. This feature will also work with hotel bookings.
- You can edit your itineraries with Google Trips app, which also lets you check out things to do and places to eat around your destination, find transportation options as well as inform you of local currency and free wi-fi options.
So there you have it. While Google is obviously not known as a travel company, they have some great products that make a travelers life much easier. And, being that it is Google, we are willing to bet this is only the beginning.
Eiffel Tower Photo by: Paul Gaudriault
Airplane In The Yellow Sky Photo by: Dominik Scythe