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Get Gas, Air, Clean Windshield, and Now Google Maps


image Today is a big day for my brother-in-law David. Today is the day that he officially becomes a Google expert. He may live in the tiny town of Newland, NC–far from Mountain View–but he’s also an engineer responsible for installing and maintaining gas pumps–today, that makes him a Google expert.

Why?

Google has announced a joint partnership with Gilbarco–maker of gas pumps–that will see Google Maps on small screens at gas pumps.

Motorists will be able to scroll through several categories to find local landmarks, hotels, restaurants and hospitals selected by the gas station’s owner. After the driver selects a destination, the pump will print out directions. Eventually, Gilbarco hopes to make it possible to type in a specific address and get directions.

Google says they won’t display ads alongside the directions, but "participating retailers will be able to make extra money from other merchants that offer coupons on the service."

So, next time you fill up for gas. Look for the Google Maps on your pump, and say hi to my brother-in-law for me.

  • http://www.acopic.co.uk Lee Turner

    That sounds pretty cool. I’d love to see that in the UK.

  • http://www.brianchappell.com Brian Chappell

    Now that is thinking outside the box. Pretty slick I must say.

  • http://www.watersubject.com WaterSubject

    It will be a pretty useful thing.
    Any ideas on how Google plans to make money out of it?

  • http://www.marketingpilgrim.com Andy Beal

    @WaterSubject – article was a little vague. They could be doing it just as a channel for getting more people to use Google.

  • Dean

    Greeeeat….now I will need to wait 20 minutes for gas while “Betty” looks for directions to the bridge tournament. Bad Idea!

    How about a separate kiosk where people can get this info…it works for the air hose and you can charge for it – and you don’t hold up people who WANT TO BY GAS!

    Dean
    Car driver & GPS owner

  • http://www.smallbusinesssem.com/ Matt McGee

    I’m with Dean. I think this smacks of desperation to put Google Maps in front of anyone and everyone. If you don’t mind a link drop in the comments, Andy, I just wrote about this on my blog tonight:

    http://www.smallbusinesssem.com/2007/11/07/google-maps-at-the-gas-station-no-thanks/

    I can’t see this succeeding.

  • http://www.undergroundattraction.com ScottUA

    I have to agree with both those in favor and against it. The concept’s really good, but if the maps are not on a separate panel that wouldn’t delay the next person from being serviced, then that’s a self-defeating functionality.

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  • http://bushidoblog.com.ar Zen

    Beats the hell out of asking someone for directions!

  • http://www.salarymap.com/ Tom Barr

    Anything that gets people to stop saying “well mapquest said I could get there from here”. I doubt that Aunt Matilda will try to find the bridge tournament using local.Google.com/unleaded. I think web savvy travelers will be locating the nearest Starbucks or burger place while getting gas. Google can probably break even on the pumps and look in more of the local search market mindshare at the same time.