Google Maps turns 15, announces major redesign to app

Maps will now have five icons on the bottom of the screen, three of which are new.
Google Maps turns 15, announces major redesign to app
Google Maps turns 15, announces major redesign to app
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Google is celebrating its 15 years of existence by adding more features, which will start showing up in the app from March this year.

The very look and feel of the Google Maps app for both Android and iOS will be altered and while these may start rolling out immediately the upgrades for public transit and augmented reality will be happening only by March.

Thursday marked the 15th anniversary of the original launch of the app and the company used the occasion to demonstrate the changes being made in the app going forward.

The most significant change will be the appearance of five icons at the bottom of the map against just two now. You have Commute and Explore buttons now. You will have “Saved”, “Contribute” and “Updates” as the new additions.

At present when you tap on Commute you get to see how long it will take you to reach your regular daily destination, whether it is your place of work or business. There are options on top for the modes of travel. The Explore button will show the restaurants and events etc. You may also see some recommendations from others who have used Google Maps to search for these services.

The new “Saved” button will show you the different locations or services you had bookmarked. This becomes quite useful for people traveling to new places. If you had made a list of places to visit in a city you are traveling to and on reaching recall through the Saved button all those places will be shown on the map.

The “Contribute” button is meant for you to add your opinion or review of a place you had been to. It can be useful for others to refer to.

And lastly, “Updates” is basically a quick guide to a place you are visiting, with the popular landmarks you can visit or the best restaurants around etc.

For an international traveller, Google Maps may help do away with those thick books they have been used to carrying around the world. With an interactive map with a wealth of information, this is a killer application.

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