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(Pocket-lint) - It's a season of updates for Google Maps, with plenty of new features coming to the service including the swanky new 3D Immersive View that lets you check out detailed fly-bys of famous landmarks.

One of the welcome additions, though, is far more focussed on functionality and could be a boon to those concerned about their safety while navigating around unfamiliar (or well-known) areas.

A new notification system is being added to the shared location feature, which will let you send people a prod when you arrive at a chosen point on Google Maps - or, indeed, let you be prodded yourself when a friend or loved one does the same.

This could be ideal if you're organising a meet-up at a venue so that you can see when people are arriving, but also has more obvious safety benefits. The example Google supplies in its blog post about the features mentions checking in on someone doing a solo hike, for example.

To make sure that the feature isn't abused to track locations, the person whose location is being shared will be repeatedly reminded that this is happening and be able to turn it off easily, and you can also block people from sending you their own location notifications if they're not relevant or of interest to you.

Better cycling coming to Google Maps

There's another welcome change coming to Maps according to that blog post, too, in the form of far more detailed information about cycling routes for you to review before you set off.

These will detail the amount of traffic you can expect to encounter, elevation information, and a step-by-step list of the turns needed.

While cycling is booming around the world, Google Maps directions are still sometimes pretty flawed, at least in London, so it's great to see that more work is going into this part of its navigation features.

Writing by Max Freeman-Mills.