Google Maps gets new features

Google Maps gets revamped, with new features included and other features tweaked

NEW FEATURES. Along with a native tablet display, Google Maps is redesigned and improved with new features. Screen shot from Google

MANILA, Philippines – Do you enjoy using Google Maps? You’re in luck! Released on July 10 to a gradual rollout worldwide, an upgraded Google Maps plays host to a re-design and some changes.

In an announcement post, Google explained some of the revamped or new features it has added onto Google Maps, such as new search and navigation functions.

EXPLORATION! Google's search features now feature ratings and additional information. Screen shot from Google

Improved exploration functions let users input a search string to find applicable places that fit your needs. Users can tap on an info sheet at the bottom of the Google Maps app to bring up a map pin for the location of that place. A full list of results is also available when you tap on the list icon.

Adapted from Zagat, an earlier Google acquisition, Google Maps also has the ability to get ratings for locations, though this is subject to location restrictions. These results are also curated and integrated into what people search for to provide better information for a user’s needs.

GETTING AROUND. Google Maps adds voice-powered navigation to its features. Screen shot from Google

For those of you looking for a way to ease through traffic woes, Google also provides help in this department. Google Maps now supports turn-by-turn navigation, as well as multiple map views. You can now learn the best route to get somewhere, and have the app tell you how to get to your location of choice.

Google Maps also supports a dedicated tablet design now, making it easier for tablet users to make the most out of the app natively.

While Google Latitude, the ability to check in to an area, and offline map viewing will be discontinued, some of the features still exist in a modified form. Google+ for Android will feature check-ins and location sharing, with an iOS change allowing that feature to come later on. Offline map viewing has been tweaked slightly, with Google saying users can “access maps offline by simply entering ‘OK Maps’ into the search box when viewing the area you want for later.”

Google mentions that the upgraded Google Maps app is rolling out globally on Google Play and will make its way to the App Store soon. –

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