Google Maps has recently integrated elevation profiles into their Bike Routes feature, allowing for a better understanding of the ground you wish to cover. The update came unannounced and should greatly benefit those who use Maps as part of their route planning.
The feature provides a clear and unobtrusive graph located below the information pane and doesn"t detract from the simple and easy to use interface Google is renowned for. Cyclists were previously flocking to third party services for technical breakdowns (such as elevation profiles), so its good to see Google recognizing the potential for such an update.
The profiles appear in all 12 countries that bike routes are available for, consisting of Austria, Australia, Belgium, Canada, Switzerland, Germany, Denmark, Finland, Netherlands, Norway, New Zealand, Sweden, UK and the United States.
The update has not yet been made available for mobile users, which is a bit of a negative when considering the nature of the sport. Nevertheless we suspect the feature will be made available in the future months, as well as other niche services for transport.