Google provided updates later than the usual Wednesday. With the latest update, Google Maps now reaches version 8.2. This update contains a very important feature for cyclists, the elevation chart. From now on, cyclists can choose their routs more informed than ever.
If you plan to choose a power route, take the steepest way. Just kidding, of course you will choose the easy route, you are already on a bike paying enough effort. Android Police presented another couple of features in the new Google Maps update which will prove to be handy for cyclists, as well as for everyone else.
Google Maps update comes with voice command feature
The new voice activation in navigation mode feature will allow you to interrogate the app about the remaining time until destination or show the traffic. Probably the next step in navigation will be the ability to control the app directly with your mind through brain sensors. Basic direct commands are already functional on Google Glass due to the efforts of a British start-up.
Android Police considers the voice command option contained in the Google Maps update to be unsatisfactory so far because it is extremely sensitive. It requires very clear commands or nothing will happen. That is in strong contrast to the usual Google voice input methods, but Maps features a Beta version for now. Imagine a panting cyclist repeatedly attempting to find out how much longer does it take to reach the destination. Google will probably fine-tune it after feed-back and analysis. So now Google Maps includes elevation data and users will even be able to compare elevation for various routes.
Uber, the transportation company produces such an important impact that Google decided to adapt Google Maps for it. Uber card will appear from now on in the car tab of navigation instead of the public transportation tab.
Google will roll out the update during the next couple of days, but you can manually update it from Google Play Store or download the APK from somewhere else if you are anxious to try the new Google Maps features.
The new feature regarding elevation data was rumored in May. This new feature is surely useful, but voice activation commands are way more important in the grand picture. Being able to use your voice instead of hands translates in an overall increased feeling of safety for car drivers, as well as for the other passengers.
For now, the Google Maps update will be available only for Android. Probably Google will roll out the iOS version at a later date.