Google Maps now tracks public transportation

While Google's software can't make the trains run on time, it can now tell you just how late they'll be.

That's because Google has partnered with four U.S. cities and two European cities to add a new live transit feature to Google Maps that can tell you whether your train or bus is running late.

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Essentially, it works like this: You open up Google maps and click on the station you're traveling to. Once you click on the station you'll be given a list of any trains or buses that are running behind schedule as well as a record of when the bus actually departed and an estimation of when it will arrive at your stop. The four U.S. cities initially on board with the program are Boston, Portland, Ore., San Francisco and San Diego. Google says it is also working with other public transportation authorities to "help them provide live data to more people in more cities."

Google says you'll need to have the latest version of Google Maps on your mobile browser to access the feature, which the company says requires Android version 1.6 or above. The feature is also available on any desktop computer that accesses Google Maps.

Read more about software in Network World's Software section.

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