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Google Maps

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  • Vendor: Google Inc.
  • Version: Varies with device
  • Price: Free

Those of us of a certain age remember a time before Google Maps. A time before the maps that came before Google Maps. A time when we unfolded large pieces of paper in a car while driving at high speed — or, worse, as a tourist in a faraway land — gazed at the mysterious symbols and hoped we knew which way we were pointed in the first place.

Those were the dark ages.

In February 2005 Google launched Google Maps. And today it's an integral part of our daily lives, to say nothing of the Google experience. At its simplest, it's a way to figure out where you are, or where you're going. But it's grown into so much more than that. Google Maps now ties into your search results. Looking for, say, Chinese food? You'll see recommendations. Or, even better, is that you might see your friends' recommendations, thanks to integration with Google+.

And what Google did from the top down with satellites it's also done from the driver's seat. Google has a fleet of cars worldwide that maps the roads and highways, ensuring accuracy and — and this is the really cool part — taking 360-degree "Street view" pictures, so you can actually see where you're going and what it will look like before you get there.

Google Maps made the transition from web browser to mobile, of course, and it's now an indispensable part of our online lives.

Screenshots

Google Maps RSS Feed
Link in Google Maps

Google Maps gets a visit from Legend of Zelda's Link on the web

Google Maps is getting a nice Easter egg for the next few days on the web. The familiar peg icon that's meant to move a user into Street View has been replaced with Link from Nintendo's Legend of Zelda game series. Link's appearance in Google Maps is promoting the release of The Legend of...
Google Maps' new shortcut makes it faster to get started going

New 'driving' home screen shortcut gives Google Maps a jump-start

A new update to Google Maps is aimed squarely at making getting driving directions less of a hassle thanks to a new "Driving" shortcut that can be added to your home screen. Aside from providing quick access to navigation mode, Google says that using the shortcut will automatically serve up ETAs...
Miniature Google Street View

Google lets you explore the world's largest model railway exhibition in Street View

Miniatur Wunderland is the world's largest model railway exhibition. It's the go-to event for those who enjoy putting together locomotives and managing miniature railways, and while the actual setups and landscapes crafted by attendees are nothing short of amazing, just how cool would it be to...
Google Maps gains offline navigation and search in India

Google brings offline navigation and search to Google Maps in India

Google recently launched its offline search and navigation in Google Maps, and now the company is expanding the feature to users in India as well. With the offline navigation and search, you are able to select an area of a map and have it downloaded, so that if you drop your data connection you...
Google Maps

Google Maps Local Guide contributors can get freebies like 1TB of Google Drive space

Google Maps uses content contributions from volunteers called Local Guides, and those users are now going to be rewarded for their efforts. The company has announced it has started a program that offers Local Guides some freebies based on their level of participation. Local Guides members will...
Google Maps gains offline navigation and search

Google Maps adds offline navigation and search

Google has finally starting the roll out of offline navigation and search to Google Maps, allowing you to save a geographic area to navigate without the need for a connection. This feature was first previewed back at Google I/O, and it is just now beginning to roll out to users. With this, you'...
Google Maps Search

Google Maps and Search apps add holiday hours for businesses

We all know that during the holidays, some stores and businsses have special extended hours for shopping, along with reduced hours during the actual holiday dates. Google wants to help smartphone owners during this time with new updates that are rolling out to its Maps and Search apps that will...
Google Maps to add detour options with ease

Google Maps will soon let you add multiple destinations to your route

Google has announced that an update to Google Maps, which will be rolling out over the next few weeks, will bring gas prices to the maps as well as the ability to add detours to your route. With this, you'll be able to add extra stops on your journey, without having to reset your end destination...
The giant tortoises of the Galapagos are on Street View

You can now spy on the giant tortoises from the Galapagos Islands on Google Street View

Google recently launched a standalone Street View app for mobile phones, and now you can keep up with the giant tortoises of the Galapagos Islands. There are tons of places you can check out with the app, in full 360-degree glory, but why not see what some huge tortoises are up to, right? In...
Google rolls out new branding to app icons on Android and the web

Google begins rolling out new branding across web and Android apps

Following the announcement of its new logo, Google has started updating the logos and icons of several of its apps. On the web, several of Google's services now feature a capital sans-serif G where there was previously a lower-case serif g. Likewise, updates have started trickling out to the...
Google Maps

Google Map Maker edits allowed once again in the US and many more countries

Google is once again allowing people to access its Map Maker feature in order for them to edit and submit their Google Maps changes for the United States and 44 more countries. Google suspended access to Map Maker earlier this year after it was discovered that someone had placed the Android...
Google Maps' new timeline feature puts location history at your fingertips [Update]

Google Maps' new timeline feature puts location history at your fingertips [Update]

If you've ever wanted a convenient way to keep track of your stops on your latest trip with Google Maps for Android, you may be in luck. Google appears to be quietly rolling out a new "Timeline" feature which allows you to take a look at your location history in detail. The feature, called "...
Google Maps

Google Map Maker will be reopened in phases starting in early August

Google will once again allow outside contributors to edit features on Google Maps in the near future with the reopening of its Google Map Maker service. The company will open the service on a limited basis sometime in early August, in order to find reliable community members that can take on some...
Google Maps traffic India

Google brings real-time traffic information to Indian roads

Driving on Indian roads is not unlike navigating an obstacle course, with motorists on two-wheelers and four-wheelers trying to dodge city buses (which don't follow the lane system), autos and errant pedestrians. And that's not even accounting for the wildlife that manages to find its way onto...
Google Maps will soon have railroad crossing information

Google to bring railroad crossing information to Google Maps

Google Maps will soon include all of the public railroad crossings on its maps, as the company has partnered with the Federal Railroad Administration to increase driver safety. There are around 130,000 public and 85,000 private crossings in the country currently, and there are more than 2,000...
Google scales El Capitan to bring first vertical Street View images

Google scales El Capitan to bring first vertical Street View images

Google has released a set of images that lets you climb up the side of El Capitan at Yosemite national park without leaving your computer. Instead of traversing down streets, Google Maps takes you up on the vertical journey. For those with a fear of heights or are simply unable to make the...
Google Maps now warns you if your destination will be closed before you get there

Google Maps now warns you if your destination will be closed before you get there

Google Maps will now tell you if your destination will be closed before you get there. Google Maps has scored an update that is sure to please those that are constantly running behind. Now, when you set out on your next journey, Maps will let you know if your destination will be closed before...
Google Maps on Android

The ultimate guide to Google Maps on Android

Google Maps is an amazingly powerful tool that can help you get anywhere, and see anything. Whether you want to drive to a new place in the shortest amount of time, navigate a public transit system that you're still learning or get recommendations for things around you, Google Maps is an all...
Google Maps gets real-time transit information

Google will show you how long your journey is likely to take with new real-time transit information

Google is adding another big feature to Google Maps, real-time transit information, improving the overall experience for those who rely on it while traveling. Google Maps is gaining real-time transit information, which will not only show you how long you have to wait where you are, but also...
Google is bringing full offline access to Google Maps later this year

Full offline Google Maps access coming later this year

Fully offline access is coming to Google Maps in the future, along with turn-by-turn navigation and more. At Google I/O today, Google announced that offline maps are coming to Google Maps later this year. With offline maps, users will be able to save maps and search for things with...

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