I have such a conflicting relationship with Google. On one hand, I despise the search giant for being what I believe to be the most evil company in Silicon Valley. On the other hand, I love their idea that the web should be accessable via the browser, not through an application like Apple believes.
This being said, Google updated the way their mobile website looks on iOS devices. If you go to m.google.com from your iPhone, you will now be presented with a landing page similar to the one above. You can obviously search like you normally do, but you can also easily search for restaurants, coffee shops, bars, and more near places you. I gave it a quick try and I have to admit that it is absolutely brilliant…
Tap the Restaurants icon for example, and Google will ask your permission to use your location. Let it do its thing, and Google will give you a bunch of restaurants around you, with links to their website, contact info, ratings, and of course reviews pulled from various sites.
While the concept isn’t new, the implementation is very original. As you scroll down through the results, the map will be updated in real time to show the location of the restaurant you’re looking at, with a picture of it in the corner.
Unlike Yelp, you can’t filter the search. But you can tell Google what exactly you’re looking for. For example, type in “Italian restaurants” and it will refine the results showing you Italian restaurants only.
I’ve never been a huge fan of the Yelp app because it never gave me a quick visualization of where places are. Google just did that. Next time I’m looking for a specific type of place, I’ll know where to go.
Have you tried that yet? If so, what do you think?