Google Maps upgrade finally jumps from beta to default

Google Maps upgrade finally jumps from beta to default

Summary: Starting today, Google is moving the next evolution of Maps out of preview mode to become the default mapping desktop experience for all of its users worldwide.


If you thought Google Maps had you covered, you haven't seen anything yet.

Google finally pushing out an upgraded version of the online mapping platform that has been in the works for some time now.

The Internet giant first debuted the fancier and heavier version of Maps (in both graphics and data) at the company's annual developer conference, Google I/O, last May.

At that time, it was only unveiled to a small pool of Google users in beta mode.

Starting today, Google is moving the next evolution of Maps out of preview mode to become the default Google Maps desktop experience for all of its users worldwide.

Besides some of the obvious visual and aesthetic differences, other new features include related results when search for locations, real-time traffic reports, most efficient route guides based on the user's current location, and a new imagery carousel of landmarks around the world.

Street View is also taking a bigger leap indoors with many more images and directions within museums, airports and other large public spaces.

All Google users shouldn't expect to see the revamped Maps at once as the Mountain View, Calif.-based corporation prepares to roll it out to everyone over the next few weeks.


For a tour of the new version of Google Maps, check out the promo video below:

Images via Google

Topics: Mobility, Android, Google, Google Apps, Web development

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  • But Google hasn't finished it yet

    A lot of the functionality of the old maps isn't on the new maps.

    It seems to be all about getting more advertisements onto the maps.

    But where are the lab functions from before? For example, the measuring rule? Or plotting a track on the map using pin-points to measure a path?
    • Features r so old skool

      Features r so old skool, u r supid! Social roxx!!!!!!

      Sadly, yes, this is the way things are headed - more ads, more "social." Less features, less functionality, less usefulness.

      We are becoming a society of the lowest common denominator.

      (more sarcasm)
      Forget those smart people, we don't need to cater to them. Forget those people with special needs, they are a minority. Forget people who are power users, they don't matter anymore.

      Just forget all those people who need or want features. It's too complex. We want to call web apps "powerful" anyways, and they only have less than half the features regular apps ever had.
      (/more sarcasm)
  • Still lots of problems

    The desktop version of the new maps program is barely tolerable, but the mobile version is totally unusable! I keep maps on in my car to track traffic, and the old version did a great job of that. The new one still has the traffic, but they've lost the zooming buttons and the scale of miles, so the information is harder to access and asses. Trying to use "pinch zoom" while driving is a worthless endeavor. The old version had simply "+" and "-" buttons which you could poke without looking to zoom the maps. Worse, if you scroll ahead on your route, and then try to return to your current position, it re-zooms and rotates the map. Without the scale of miles there's no way to know if the traffic jam is near or far, short or long, etc. This is not very well thought out. I went back to the old version on my phone, but the Jelly Bean upgrade on my tablet forced me into the new version. Very disappointing.