Data Enables Google Search To Serve Estimated Restaurant Wait Times

Data Enables Google Search To Serve Estimated Restaurant Wait Times

by Laurie Sullivan , Staff Writer @lauriesullivan, November 7, 2017

Estimating the wait time for a table at a restaurant seems anything but a science. Google announced Tuesday that it solved the problem of gauging wait times for service.

Google engineers, for example, believe they can calculate the time it will take to get a table for two at 5:30 p.m. on a Friday evening to free up.

Data Enables Google Search To Serve Estimated Restaurant Wait Times | DeviceDaily.com

Wait times on Google Search, and coming soon to Maps, will show those searching for a restaurant the estimated wait at eateries. Now foodies can decide whether the chicken piccata is worth an hour wait or whether to plan ahead for another day to avoid a wait entirely.

Google will now show those searching for a restaurant the wait times of nearly one million sit-down restaurants worldwide that allow walk-ins. The estimates are based on anonymized historical data.

To access the feature, search for the restaurant on Google, open the business listing, and scroll down to the Popular Times section. The estimated wait time at that very moment will serve up in the results by tapping on any of the hour bars. Scrolling left or right will provide a summary of each day’s wait times below the hour bars.

“Wait time estimates are based on anonymized historical data, similar to how we compute the previously launched Popular Times and Visit Duration features, Quang Duong, software engineer for Google Maps, wrote in a blog post.

One report suggests that wait time will become available for grocery stores by Thanksgiving.

Data seems to make just about anything possible. Uber Eats uses data and algorithms to determine order and delivery times for food, including the time it takes to search, order and park the car to make the delivery.

On Monday, Google began testing a feature that will allow consumers to compare the specification of products in Google search results. The feature was spotted comparing the Pixel 2 with the Apple iPhone X.

MediaPost.com: Search Marketing Daily

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