Google Maps has been given a complete makeover and whilst the update has reached Android users iOS users will have to wait just a little bit longer.
The new design introduces a very simple and sleek design with a single button which centres the map on your location and a menu button. Whilst the new app is not available for iOS users Google have announced that the Apple update will be launched soon.
Apart from the design overhaul the update is more intuitive. The app will alert the user should a better route become available and will also reroute the user in order to reach their destination faster. Furthermore, users can see reports of problems and accidents which will help users avoid traffic jams.
However, Google have decided to do away with the offline map cache, which was rather useful considering users could draw a square on the map and save the area for offline access. Even though this is still possible the process by which this is achieved is not as simple as it once was. Now users will have to enter ‘OK Maps’ into the search box and then create a cache of the visible portion of the map.
On the other hand, Google have redeemed themselves by incorporating an Explore function which allows users to browse and discover news places without having to type in a location or name. Then again this is a feature that is common to most sat-navs.
Yet, if we cast our memories back to September 2011 we will remember that Google bought over the review and rating service Zagat.com and as of May 2012 tightly integrated this into their services. Now the review and rating service is incorporated into their Explore function illustrating how great or terrible the services around you really are as well as indicating whether specific offers are available vis-à-vis the use of a blue tag next to the business name or pin on the map.