The very last thing you want to find out after you rush through security at the airport is that your flight has been delayed. Google can’t make your flights run on time, but it’s trying the next best thing by giving you a warning when it expects a flight might get delayed.
The subtle but useful addition is thanks to some good old-fashioned AI magic. Based on historical data and intelligent projection, Google can tell you which flights are likely to get delayed and how long. Of course, you shouldn’t take this to mean your flight will be delayed. Keep showing up to the airport way earlier than you really want to, just to be safe.
Where this is really useful, however, is when planning connecting flights. A half hour delay for a single, non-stop flight usually isn’t that big of a deal. If you have a short layover, though, even a brief delay can mean you miss your connecting flight. If Google thinks your first flight of the day is likely to get delayed by enough time to make you miss your second flight, you might want to reconsider your itinerary.
For some airlines, Google will also display restrictions on basic flights, like how much overhead storage space you get, whether you can select your seat, and any additional baggage fees. This can be critical information if you’re picking an airline due to a low fare, only to be hit with extra fees and a worse experience once you get to the airport.