Google integrated its Assistant technology into Waze, allowing users to activate functions in the traffic app using their voice.
With Assistant, Google said Waze users can play music and podcasts, send messages and place calls without leaving the navigation screen. They can also access popular Waze features, such as traffic and police reports, alternate route planning and toll avoidance, using voice commands.
In a blog post, Google Assistant director Austin Chang said the changes will “keep you connected, informed and minimise distractions while you’re on the go, so you can keep your hands on the wheel and your eyes on the road.”
Google enabled the new features in the Waze app for Android in the US.
The move comes as Google continues to upgrade its family of mapping apps (it acquired Waze in 2013) and adds new navigation capabilities for Assistant.
Earlier this year, Google integrated similar Assistant-enabled features into its Maps app, and at its I/O conference in May announced it will extend those capabilities beyond the traffic apps with a new driving mode for Assistant in the coming months.