LANSING — Google Maps said last week it had expanded its live traffic feature for eight cities across Michigan.

Real-time traffic information is now available through the application for Benton Harbor, Flint, Jackson, Kalamazoo, Lansing, Muskegon, Port Huron and Saginaw. The live traffic feature had previously included only Michigan’s largest city, Detroit.

Google’s live traffic feature provides drivers with traffic updates, estimated travel times with traffic, arterial views and views of side roads in both urban and rural areas. Michigan drivers can save time and patience by having access to current travel conditions in key regions of the state.

“Maps today should be able to show you the world as it is around you,” said Deanna Yick, spokesperson for Google. “By surfacing the status of traffic throughout additional areas in Michigan, we’re working to make Google Maps as comprehensive and accurate as we can.”

The feature relies on data pulled from Google Maps and Google Navigation users who share location data. With drivers increasingly using their smartphones for directions, Google is able to pull more precise and widespread data.

The expansion of Google Maps’ live traffic feature includes more than 130 smaller cities across the United States along with the capitals of Colombia, Costa Rica and Panama. Improvements in the feature were also made in a dozen other countries including Brazil, Canada, China, France, Mexico, Russia and the United Kingdom.


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