Google Maps is one of the most useful products in Googleâ€™s lineups, and one that has truly brought high quality electronic maps to the masses. Google Maps is so widely used â€“ not just by individuals looking to find directions to a place theyâ€™re not familiar with but also by companies that provide added services like GPS navigation. Google has recently added new functionalities to the latest version of Google Maps that makes it more useful than ever.
Google Maps 5.7, which is now available at the Android Market, now incorporates turn-by-turn GPS transit navigation and this feature can be used in almost 400 cities worldwide, with more cities to be added soon. Another useful feature is the ability to download offline maps, which is going to be a killer feature for Android phone users who are concerned about how much data charges when accessing Google Maps.
The Transit navigation feature will use your phoneâ€™s GPS to find out your location as you traverse the routes that Google gets from local transit companies or from the government. Google Maps will then notify you have reached your destination by vibrating. The notification will kick in even if youâ€™re doing something else with your phone.
The other new feature in Google Maps is the ability to download parts of the map and save it to your device. You just need to select an address and you can download 10 square miles of the map surrounding that location. You can download a whole city or region but you will have to do this in square batches of map data. This is a great feature for basic navigation that will save you money in data charges.
I love the new features. These are additions that make Google Maps more useful for consumers and are changes that are geared towards functionality and not on superficiality. Way to go Google.