Jan 11 AT 8:50 AM Anthony Domanico 23 Comments

Google Maps update brings better Latitude tracking, more transit options, better battery life

google maps

Lost in the hullabaloo of the 2012 Consumer Electronics Show yesterday was an update to the Google Maps application that Google pushed to the masses. The latest Google Maps for Android claims to improve battery life while at the same time improving location tracking within Google Latitude, a service known for its adverse effect on battery life.

The latest Google Maps has also improved Transit Navigation; the update brings a better estimate of your location when you lose GPS signal and ups the number of possible transit routes from 3 to 4. As someone who has used Transit Navigation, the changes are very welcome and address a few frustrations I’ve had with Google’s service, which is still in beta.

Finally, the latest update brings more indoor maps, which you can use to navigate around various indoor venues in the US, mostly in the Las Vegas areas for CES.

It’s nice to see Google working to enhance their feature set while focusing on improving battery life, which can get very negatively hit in the Navigation process. If you haven’t already, be sure to head over to the market and update your Google Maps app to enjoy the latest and greatest Google has to offer.

Via: Engadget

Source: Android Market

Anthony loves all things technology, from hardware to apps and games. You can connect with him via Google+ or Twitter by clicking one of the fancy doo-dads above.

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  • thechad

    Better battery life is always a good thing. Especially on car tips when i forget my car charger.

    • LukeT32

      I wouldnt even dare using Nav if I didn’t have a car charger with me… well unless I had a home charger I could plug in when I got to my destination.

      • Olliedcy

        Same problem here. My wife won’t use it unless she has the car charger plugged in. Even then she complains about the effect Latitude has on her battery in her #G Slide. I haven’t noticed a major drain in my T-Mobile Vibrant though.

        • raster

          why use a smart phone at all if you wont use apps when you need to? quite dumb.

    • Jeff Pan

      I try not to use navigation when I dont have a charger with me.

      • yankeesusa

        Same here, or just make sure that a charger is available just in case. Hopefully this will help those times when you want navigation all of a sudden and know that your battery is low but need navigation. Hopefully the improvement on battery is noticeable.

    • aranea

      For short trips it’s no big deal for me on the Atrix. Short as in maybe half an hour or so. And if I remember correctly you can turn the screen off and it will still tell you where to turn.

  • Dylan

    Always nice to see Google improving its main apps to improve battery life use

    • TaoRenCe

      Keep up the great work, Google!

  • spazby

    Keep those updates coming

  • http://www.infotainmentempire.com pekosROB

    Just when you thought Google Maps couldn’t get any better… it does!

  • http://theandroidappshow.com Lane Montgomery

    My entire family uses this, I knew they could do something about the awful battery life with latitude.

  • http://pixelswim.com Steve Heinrich

    The battery life improvements are welcome! Maps is just awesome in general but Google continues to make it great.

  • Ari32

    I’m definitely glad they improved the battery life. I know on the OG Droid the battery would drain faster than the phone could charge on a car charger. I’ve been really happy with Google and their updates for maps. Keep ‘em coming!

  • Max

    We need the offline maps selection more than 10 miles!

  • MuChawn

    Has no one noticed it keeps opening itself up on ICS? Keeps showing up as a black tab in my recent app tray.

  • WlfHart

    Love Google maps, one of the best apps out there!

  • vid500

    Allways love when they improve battery life of the device, I’ll make sure to get the update.

  • yankeesusa

    This is good news. I use telenav because it was more accurate and slightly better while navigating when compared to google navigation.But lately i have been using google more often cause its so much easier and just blends with every part of the phone which makes it efficient. This update is good. Better battery life is always a good thing especially for a non rooted evo3d that still runs stock rom.

  • lokidokie

    Better battery life is always good! Loving it

  • dko3tgk

    I want to know what happened to real time traffic conditions and re-routing? It was there in the spring of 2011, and quickly gone. I’m talking about where you saw the red yellow and green lines on the turn by turn map, not the full route map. And where it would re-route you based on on real time conditions. This is something that the luxury cars have and I was impressed Google brought it to Android, but it quickly got killed.
    Is this ever coming back?

    • Slith

      There was an explanation for the traffic update removal. I remember because it occurred when I was commuting in Phoenix. They said it was due to inaccuracy I believe sometime last summer.

  • donger

    better battery life is worth the update.