Google Maps now shows COVID-19 hotspots

Google Maps now shows COVID-19 hotspots
Google says the new Covid-19 data layer will help users make informed decisions while traveling.
Google says the new Covid-19 data layer will help users make informed decisions while traveling.
Image: Google Maps

By Stan Schroeder

Google is adding another tool to help us stay safe amid the COVID-19 pandemic. 

On Wednesday, the company announced a new feature in Google Maps: An info layer that shows information on COVID-19 cases in a particular area. 

To check it out, open Google Maps, tap on the layers button in the top right corner (see image below), and tap on COVID-19 info. Note that the feature is rolling out gradually, so it may not be available for you yet. 

Google Maps now shows COVID-19 hot spots

Image: google maps

This data layer will show a seven-day average of new COVID-19 cases per 100,000 people in the area you’re looking at, as well as a label indicating whether cases are trending up or down. Areas with a lot of new COVID-19 cases will also appear red compared to neighboring areas. 

Google Maps now shows COVID-19 hot spots

Image: google maps

Google says the new feature will be visible at the country level for all 220 countries where Google Maps is available. More precise data, such as cases on a state, province, county, and city level, will be shown where available.

The company says the data used for the new data layer comes from several authoritative sources, including Johns Hopkins, the New York Times, and Wikipedia, which in turn get their data from the WHO, government health ministries, as well as state and local health agencies and hospitals. 

The new feature will be available on Android and iOS this week. 

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