google maps 2020

Google Maps Gets New Updates For 15th Birthday: Here are 15 tips to get the most out of its features

Google Maps and many of the over a billion people who turn to Google’s app globally each month to do more than navigation guidance turn 15.

Chances are, you’re among the users, even if most of your time in Maps is spent working out how to get from point A to point B.

Google changed its icon to emphasize the evolution of the Maps. More than 220 countries have been mapped over 15 years, and Google says it has surfaced information approximately over 200 million places and information.

Google has refreshed the look of the Android and iOS versions of its Maps app as part of the birthday milestone. Most notably, the three tabs that appear on the bottom of the screen now become five.

The Explore tab provides information and ratings, and the Commute tab offers traffic and travel times.

google maps 15 years

Another new feature is the Saved button, where users can review all the places they have been at or may want to go in one place. Google says that users have saved more than 6.5 billion places on Google Maps.

The Contribute tab allows users to share what they know with others: reviews of photos, businesses, details about addresses and roads. According to Google, hundreds of millions of people each year contribute information that aids keep Maps fresh.

A new Update tab is where users can learn about trending spots from supposed publishers and experts.

Over the next few days, Google is rolling out the new Google Maps.

Here are 15 other Google tips on things users can or will be able to do within Google Maps.

  1. Translate addresses and place names


When you tap the speaker icon located next to an address or place name, Google Maps will speak out loud in the local language.


  1. Go private

google maps car built-in

Don’t want to save your Maps searches? Choose Incognito Mode, and Google won’t save them. However, you’ll lose out on some personalization. You may also want to choose auto-delete controls within your Location History to keep 3 or 18 months of data. According to Google, they will automatically delete anything older than that.


  1. Avoid ferries, tolls, highways


Tap the three dots at the top right corner in the navigation mode of the app and look for “Route options” to choose the route types you want to avoid.


  1. Share your live location and ETA


Tap the ^ button and then “Share trip progress” once you’ve started on your journey to do so with designated contacts.

  1. Find a scooter or bike


In the search bar, you can enter a bike-share or find available bikes in real-time. Google Maps can tell if a Lime scooter is available along with an estimate of the cost in more than 80 cities around the world.


  1. Charge your electric vehicle


You can also see the location and availability of charging stations for electric vehicles in some places.


  1. Know which way to walk


When you use Google’s Live View augmented reality feature, arrows direct you which way to walk. Choose a destination, tap the Directions button, and the walking tab.


  1. Travel through time


You can take a peek of the past. In Google Maps on the desktop, select a place, and drag the yellow “pegman” figure into the picture. In the top left-hand corner, click on the clock to choose the frame.

Google Maps 2020 updates

  1. Know flight information


Tap the 3 gray lines at the top left corner of the app and choose Your Places. Then select the “Reservations” tab to know if your plane is leaving on time. You can also use Maps in the terminal to figure out the location of nearby gates, restaurants, lounges, and stores.


  1. Remember where you parked


Tap the blue dot on the map and then “Save your parking“. For your convenience, look for parking difficulty icons available for more than 50 cities before you even drive.


  1. Save time


Get a sense of how crowded a restaurant or other place you want to go with the Popular Times and Wait times.


  1. Is my train colder or hotter?


Google added crowdsourced data in 2019 to help predict how crowded your train or subway or bus is likely to be at a particular time. Now the company is adding new insights via Maps that may impact your commute. These include letting you know whether specific transit systems have special sections or carriages for women, whether your train or bus is on the warmer or cooler side, and whether passengers with special needs can board with staff ready to help.

  1. Order food


You can choose pickup or delivery through certain eateries when you tap an “Order Online” button. Last year, pizza, Chinese, and breakfast food were the most search for cuisines in the U.S. using Google Maps.


  1. Add multiple stops


Tap the three dots and choose “Route options” and then “Add stop.” Google Maps will provide the fastest route between those stops.


  1. Plan group activities


Long-press anywhere on a map to add that place to a shortlist, which you can share with friends on any messaging platform.

Apple redesigned Maps

Apple unveils revamped map app with privacy at its core

Apple hopes the newly improved version of its app will woo users away from their rivals, such as Google Maps and Waze.

The tech giant redesigned Maps app has arrived.

The company said US users can now use its revamped app and Europe users will have access in the coming months as well. Apple Maps’ redesign offers faster and more accurate navigation and provides users comprehensive views of roads, buildings, parks and more. Apple outfitted hundreds of planes and cars with custom sensors and lidar, covering over 4 million miles.

Apple’s senior vice president of internet software and services Eddy Cue said in a press release that they set out to make the best and most private maps app in the world that’s reflective of the way people explore the planet today. He noted that they rebuilt the map from the ground to reimagine how Maps enhances the life of a person with privacy at its core.

In Miami, real-time transit will be made available along with the new Maps apps, in time for the upcoming Super Bowl.

Tensions between Tech Giants

In September 2012, Apple released its homegrown mapping program together with its iOS 6 mobile software. Google Maps was previously preloaded on Apple devices, but tensions between the two giants in technology led apple to make its software. Unfortunately for Apple, its Maps did not really work. Several iOS users immediately reported problems with everything from simply searching for an address to navigation.

new apple maps

Apple apologized for the issues, fired its head of software and started its work to improve its mapping app.

Since then, Apple has continually rolled out updates and new features to its Maps, such as a flyover feature to provide 3D views of certain cities, real-time transit information, indoor maps for airports and malls, and flight status updates. The revamped version of Apple Maps started rolling out in 2018, giving more detailed information and more accurate navigation. The revamped version started in Northern California and expanded to the East Coast and eventually to other areas.

Apple unveiled the more-detailed Maps app at its developer conference in June and revealed that it would be available to US users by the end of 2019 and to other countries by 2020.

Apple maps new updates

Released in September, the iOS 13 brought many other new features, including the Look Around feature that is very useful for users who want to explore major cities. It gives interactive, street-level imagery of areas like New York, Los Angeles, Las Vegas, the San Francisco Bay Area, Houston, and Oahu. It is quite similar to Google Street View.

Users can build shareable lists of favorite locations to visit in a city. Apple also added capabilities that make it easier for users to navigate to places they frequently visit, such as work and home.

Apple assured the users that it is focused on keeping personal information safe. Users don’t need to sign in to use Maps and the Maps is not connected to the user’s Apple ID in any way. Maps can suggest a departure time to make your appointment and other similar things using on-device intelligence.  Maps’ collected data such as search terms, navigation routing and traffic information are associated with random identifiers, which continually reset to offer the best possible experience and to improve Maps.

Apple utilizes a “fuzzing” process to obscure the user’s location on Apple servers when searching for a place. Maps converts the exact location where the search originated to a less precise one after 24 hours and doesn’t retain the history of where a user has been or what has been searched.