Planning a trip using Google Maps just got a little easier and useful. Google teamed up with The Weather Channel to create interactive layers that overlay weather data and radar information on top of Google Maps.
To use the feature click on the Google Maps' My Maps tab and select The Weather Channel feature to begin exploring.
The new service allows you to see current weather conditions and forecasts at a glance from across the globe as you view Google Maps. Everything from severe weather alerts, cloud coverage, and more can also be added to your view.
Major points of interest have a small bubble that displays current temperature and weather conditions. Click on a bubble and it expands to a larger bubble that provides links to a 10-day forecast, video forecasts for the region, and specialty forecasts (for example a "fishing forecast"). Any bubble that is outlined red and has red text signifies a severe weather alert.
Services similar to this have existed in the past, even ones that use the Google Maps' API, but this is the first sponsored by Google.
While some weather-heads may enjoy seeing the temperature and other info about a lot of different cities at any given time, this service will really shine when it works with Google Maps' directions feature.Imagine how cool it would be to plan a multi-day road trip using Google Maps and then have Google anticipate the weather along the way - possibly suggest an alternate route based on blue skies.