It's a nightmare. Your one friend needs vegan options, another person is gluten-free, you're craving pho, and 20 group texts later, no one can agree. The group will be able to see the relative locations of each destination in their app or browser, and they can vote with a thumbs-up or thumbs-down, and Google will keep score. And when you want to add a place, you simply press and hold on the location's name within the Maps app and drag it into a shortlist. The navigation service is getting an update that will make it significantly easier for you to plan trips and outings with your friend group, taking the pain out of decision making with multiple people.
The group planning feature starts rolling out on Android and iOS this week. It appears that you can vote on multiple places, so if you're open to visiting more than one location, you can give all of them a thumbs up. The company is also working on an augmented reality Street View mode for Google Maps, which will overlay directions onto a live feed from your phone's camera. Group Planning is just the latest in a string of releases that have bolstered Google Maps' feature set, and it certainly won't be the last.
Google has officially announced that it is adding the ability to plan a meet-up with some friends right within the Maps app.