Google updates Maps on Android

Posted by Mark Raby

Google has revamped its official Google Maps app for Android.

As part of the new update, which takes the app to version 6.5, Google has optimized the interface for the lucky few people who manage to be running the new Ice Cream Sandwich edition of Android, but there are enhancements for other users as well.

For example, the app now fully integrates all of Google's public transportation options that it offers on the desktop version of Google Maps.

In addition, users will have a more robust set of options when searching for directions from point A to point B, allowing them to choose routes that involve fewer public transportation options, the one that has the least amount of walking no matter how many transfers are required, and the one that Google's algorithms determine as the recommended route.

"Whether you just need to get somewhere as fast as possible, or you want to avoid the risk of a missed connection or you prefer not to tire your legs, you can get the transit directions that best suit you," Google wrote in an official blog post.

In addition, the user interface has been enhanced even for those running versions of Android that are below version 4.0. Handsets capable of displaying high-resolution graphics will notice a much greater pixel density, making the graphics crisper, along with quicker load times.

When it comes to maps, being able to see those tiny street names is important, and this update addresses that issue.

And because it's Google, the company also took this opportunity to release a fun stat about Google Maps - the app's turn-by-turn GPS functionality has provided users with more than 31 billion miles of directions, the equivalent of 10 trips to Neptune.