Maps gains better discovery features in Android app update

BY GreenBot Staff

Published 31 May 2016

packed a lot of little things into the latest Maps update that may make your next trip a little more pleasant.

First off, Maps will now ping you with “new popular places” when you’re away from home. To ’s credit, this is turned off by default (way too many apps are opt-out with features that ping you with notifications). You can find it under the Notifications tab.

new  popular places

Flip on the “new popular places” notification to find out what’s worth checking out.

Additionally, you can finally launch the always-hy “OK ” voice comms from inside Maps, where before you would have to exit the program to do so. This is enabled by default, so hop into the Navigation section to turn it off if you don’t want it.

Another helpful feature is the ability to find gas stations, restaurants, coffee shops, grocery stores along your route. This was previously only available during Drive Mode if you were, well, driving. But now it works for navigation if you choose ’s walking or bicycle directions.

In fact you’re probably more likely to use it in those circumstances, as you shouldn’t stare at the screen to find a coffee shop while in the middle of traffic.

search along route

You can search along your Maps route whether you’re driving, walking, or bike riding.

There are a few more code strings buried in the A that hint at some upcoming features. A new feature called Discover indicates it would function much the way Now offers you suggestions for places to check out when you go away from home. 

If you’re traveling through places with limited connection quality, Maps may automatically download details along those routes so you don’t end up lost. This could be very helpful for long trips that go through remote areas, as you won’t need to spend time beforeh downloading an entire map of a state to your phone.

Finally, there’s some type of message that celebrates how far you’ve traveled in Street View. It’s unclear if these will come to a final build, as often adds in removes code while trying things out. The new features can be found in version 9.26.1 of Maps, which is rolling out in the ay Store is available now on A Mirror.

The impact on you: This is a nice update for discovering new things out there, which is increasingly what Maps is about instead of just solely serving as a directional aide. also isn’t terribly informative when it comes to offering a changelog, so you may have to dig around for other discoveries.