I remember a while back there was a demo from Google about how you can plan a route on your computer, then send directions to your phone for when you’re ready to go. How do I do that? And can I do it if I have an iPhone?
You’re spot on, and transferring directions – whether driving, walking or taking the bus – is a feature that works with both Apple Maps to iPhones and Google Maps to either iPhones or Android phones. And the great bonus? It’s really easy to do. Let’s focus on Google Maps and the iPhone, since that’s the specific configuration you ask about. The first step is to ensure that you have the Google Maps app on your iPhone: without it, you’re going to be out of luck!
Then you’ll want to go to Google Maps and create some sort of driving, walking, or public transport directions. Or, I suppose, bicycle directions if you’re so inclined. Since I’m on the road this week, the timing’s good since I need some directions too, from Bozeman, Montana to Kalispell, Montana.
As you undoubtedly know, a click on the blue diamond icon to the right of the search box brings up the directions box:
Click in the starting point box you can choose “My location” for your current location.
Then for the destination, just start typing and Google will offer hints and suggestions:
In this instance, there are actually three different routes between the two cities, as Google shows:
Once a specific path is selected (I’ll use the first one, via MT-83 N since it’s shortest) details of the route are shown:
305 miles. A fair amount of driving! Now, to get it to your iPhone — or whatever kind of phone you have — simply click on the tiny phone icon with the arrow just to the right of the directions summary. Here’s a close-up:
Bit easier to see, yes? 🙂
Click on the “share to phone” icon and, assuming you’ve already added your smartphone number to your profile, you’ll see the two basic choices of how you send the info to your phone:
I’m a big fan of sms text messages, so it’s no surprise that I’m going to choose “Text” to have the Google Maps driving directions sent to my Apple iPhone 7 via text message!
Ready? It’ll confirm your number (or you can enter a different one if you prefer):
Looks good to me, so I click “Send” and that’s it on the computer. Now it’s time to turn to the iPhone, because just a moment or two later, I get a message with a rather startling short URL embedded:
Easy enough, now it’s just a matter of tapping on the above URL on my iPhone 7 and it pops up within the Google Maps application on the phone with zero extra work:
Tap on the blue circle with the white upward-pointing arrow to start the directions. Easily done, actually, and after the first or second time you go through the steps, you’ll find it’s quite quick to accomplish!