Google on Tuesday unveiled an absolutely cool new Google Maps feature that will immediately appeal to users who rely on bikesharing services to get around town. Thanks to a new partnership with Ito World, the new Google Maps functionality will let you quickly discover bikesharing stations around you complete with detailed information. You’ll see how many bikes are available for rental, and whether there are any spots open at your destination to drop off your bike. And it’s all happening in real-time.
Bikesharing is a booming business, Google explains in a blog post, with an estimated 1,600 bikesharing systems sand more than 18 million shared bikes in use in urban areas.
Google Maps will not offer information about all those systems at once. The app is taking things slowly, with 24 major cities in 16 countries getting the feature at first. The list includes Barcelona, Berlin, Brussels, Budapest, Chicago, Dublin, Hamburg, Helsinki, Kaohsiung, London, Los Angeles, Lyon, Madrid, Mexico City, Montreal, New Taipei City, New York City, Rio de Janeiro, San Francisco Bay Area, São Paulo, Toronto, Vienna, Warsaw and Zurich.
The animation above shows the feature in action in London. All the bikesharing locations near you are displayed on the map. An info card at the bottom of the screen features a navigation shortcut, which may come in handy if you’re visiting a new city, as well as a shortcut for calling the bikesharing center if that’s an available option.
The feature will be available both on Android and iOS, and you won’t have to do anything to get it.