Vacations are supposed to reduce stress, not create it. But that’s not always the case. Just planning a vacation can be pretty darn stressful. Now, Google wants to remove all those vacation anxieties—or at least some of them.
Today, the company launched Google Trips, a new mobile app dedicated to trip planning. You key in where you want to go, and it helps you arrange everything from hotel and dinner reservations to sightseeing. Based on your tastes, needs, and available time, it provides daily itineraries for 200 cities across the globe, automatically assembling the most popular attractions and local experiences into a neatly packaged tour, using data from the visits of other travelers.
Once you book your trip, it collects all your reservations in a single location. And once you start your trip, if you tap on the “magic wand” button, the app gives you a new daily itinerary updated with nearby attractions.
The app is part of Google’s larger efforts to build consumer tech that simplify your life through data-driven artificial intelligence. In recent months, the company has also unveiled a new chat app, Allo, and a new living room appliance, Google Home, that seek to better understand and respond to your needs using deep neural networks, networks of hardware and software that learn tasks by analyzing vast amounts of data. And using similar technology, the Google Photos app can instantly search your photo collection for particular objects or even behavior, like, say, a hug.
All this, in turn, is part of a much larger boom in the tech world around artificial intelligence. Tech’s biggest players, from Amazon to Facebook to Apple are using deep learning to reinvent everything from speech recognition to security. Google Trips is the latest example.