To help users follow businesses through the Google Maps iOS app, Google announced a new feature that allows users to monitor updates and news from companies. Users can access the feature, which was only for Android at first, through a “For You” tab on the app, according to reports that call the function a “challenger to Facebook Pages.”
By using a “follow” button, users on iOS devices can search for a store or restaurant (among other places) to stay up to date with the latest news from that establishment. In a blog post, Google Maps Product Manager Andrew Cooper wrote, “You’ll then be able to see important updates from these places in your ‘For You’ tab so you can quickly learn about upcoming events, offers and more.”
Businesses, too, will have the ability to see customers who use iOS devices, in addition to users of Android devices. In the post, Cooper continued, “places and businesses all over the world can see their followers in the Google My Business app, and actively post helpful information for their followers to see.”
The news comes after Google announced in December that it had transferred its “For You” function to over 130 new countries on Android and more than 40 countries on iOS. Google said in a blog post that the “For You” tab helps users to discover fun new places. Users can also receive recommendations and updates — such as recent news about a pop-up or opening, as well as new menu items — by following places and neighborhoods.
At the time, Google said the “For You” feature would be rolled out more widely. In the blog post, the internet company said, “Whether you’re staying local or traveling to a new city, let the ‘For You’ tab be your guide for your next culinary adventure.”
However, Google Maps updates aren’t the only enhancements the company has made in recent months: Google Assistant launched support for Siri Shortcuts per an announcement in November.