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Google to show estimated wait times for restaurants

08 November, 2017, 02:02 | Author: Kristen Ingram
  • Google Will Now Tell You How Long the Wait Is at Your Favorite Restaurant

The fact that a restaurant is busy at 3PM on a Thursday afternoon doesn't necessarily mean you'll have to wait ages for service - there may be more staff working, for instance. Google is adding new detail with information about actual wait times and projected wait times to help hungry consumers plan their visits for a bite to eat. There you'll see the estimated wait time at that very moment.

On Monday, Google began testing a feature that will allow consumers to compare the specification of products in Google search results.

The search giant debuted a new tool on Tuesday that lets people see the wait times at nearby restaurants. And by tapping on any of the hour bars, you'll see the estimated wait for that time period.

Google says that you should start seeing this new addition show up for "nearly a million" sit-down restaurants around the globe.

The company also appears to be rolling out wait time listings for grocery stores, which shows how long it will take for customers to check out, according to a company support page. The predictions are cobbled together using Google's cache of "anonymized historical data", the industry's trick for calculating popular times at businesses.

For over a couple of years now, Google has been leveraging data from Google Maps' install base to deliver these sorts of insights. Yes, it's an opt-in feature, and yes, you've probably opted-in, because it makes Maps and Search a lot more useful.

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