Google Maps has announced that they’ve added new feature that allows you to easily share your location without an address. It’s particularly useful in emergency situations in which you might not have access to a location’s name and address.
According to David Martin, Director of Program Management at Google Maps, there are over 2 billion people around the world that either lack an address or have an address that isn’t easy to find.
Launched in 2015, Plus Codes are essentially simple digital addresses obtained from latitude and longitude coordinates. You can use Plus Codes to uniquely identify any location, no matter where it is.
How to find and share your Plus Code in Google Maps
Anyone with an Android device can use the new feature to generate a simple and unique alphanumeric six-digit code based on their location by simply tapping on the blue dot in the app.
Here’s how it works:
- Open the Google Maps app on your phone.
- Check that the blue dot that represents your location is in the right place.
- Tap your finger on the blue circle icon.
- Copy the six-digit Plus Code which will appear at the top of your screen.
- Share it with whomever you want.
Google says this process makes sharing your location with others as easy as “giving them a phone number.”
You can also skip the blue dot and simply find the Plus Code for any location by dropping a red pin on a location. Then tap on the pin to find the location’s Plus Code as well as other geographical information such as latitude and longitude, and in some cases even an address.
Plus Codes are free, digital addresses for anywhere. Google describes them as regular address, but with a short code where a street name or number would be. They’re also searchable on Google Maps and Google Search, which means that “everywhere on the planet can be uniquely identified.”
Google’s Plus Codes are free to use, and they’re available “offline and you can print them on paper, posters and even signs.”
The technology is open source under the Apache 2.0 license, meaning that developers can use this groundbreaking technology to develop their own apps.
Have you used the new Plus Codes feature in Google Maps? Let us know what you think in the comments below.