Back in 2015, Google introduced a featured in Google Search that showed you when a retailer, bar, restaurant, or other location was the most popular. The Popular Times section in the place’s listing featured a graph that let you see at what time might be best to visit to avoid crowds. Today, Google is upgrading this feature with a real-time representation of how popular a place is at the moment.
As you’ll see in the GIF below, Google has tagged the Popular Times section as “Live” and with a pink bar in the graph of the current time. This should show you in real-time if a place is busy and whether or not you may want to avoid it. You can also report to Google if they are incorrect on the level of busyness.
Happy hour, easier than ever to decide upon, thanks to Google.
Additionally, Google has added in an estimate as to how long people typically stay at a location. The idea here is to help you plan around timing, assuming you need to get to multiple places or be back home at a certain time.
Finally, search results will now show hours of operation broken out by departments or special services. For example, some restaurants have separate hours for restaurant and bar sections, as do retailers for their specific areas, like pharmacy drive-thrus vs. the rest of the store.
To see these new options, just search for a place you are thinking of visiting.
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