Orienting yourself in an unknown city or finding the shortest route to arrive on time at an appointment will be easier from now on. Google, after years of research, has managed to develop augmented reality for navigation on Maps. To experience it, for now, only a few lucky ones, including David Pierce, a journalist of the Wall Street Journal who explained its operation.

To activate the augmented reality option, simply raise the smartphone vertically and frame the camera with the surroundings. Combining the GPS and Street View data, the directions will take shape on the screen, overlapping the images of streets and buildings. “It was as if Maps had tracked my directions in the real world, although no one else could see them,” Pierce commented after testing this novelty.

However, traditional maps will not disappear, but will be confined to the bottom of the display. The idea is that this new feature should not be used along the way, both because it consumes more battery than normal and because it obliges the pedestrian to stare at the phone and to distract him from the road. The application should be activated in the most critical moments, for example at intersections. Google made sure that a message reminding you to put down the phone to check where you are walking pops up during navigation.

At the moment Google still has not clarified when the application will be available to the public.