Mountain View just pulled back the curtain on the next major release of Maps for desktops while offering up an advance look at the Android and iOS versions. The mobile preview takes a more personalized approach to navigation, with a rating system and offers from merchants like Starbucks. The company also announced the Experience feature for tablets, which takes a look indoors and offers up info on things like shopping, dining and hotels.
Google also showed off the redesigned desktop version, too. New features include “immersive imagery,” and the map itself is now the user interface — with Street View and Google Earth integration. After entering search terms, icons will appear, indicating each type of result rather than the pins of previous versions. Clicking on one will pull up reviews from friends, Street View and a “see inside” option with 360-degree viewing. The views come thanks, in part, to user-submitted photo spheres. In terms of personalization options, the map will analyze the places that you travel, highlight routes and offer suggestions based on spots that you and your friends enjoy. Maps also gathers images for a specific location and displays those snapshots via a carousel down below. A retooled directions experience now offers the option of toggling between driving and transit routes alongside a schedule viewer for factoring in transfers and walking. You can sign up for the new Maps interface for desktop HERE .
Maps for Android has also received a trio of new location services APIs to help devs to better leverage that strength. Fused Location Provider is the first, and it brings faster, more accurate location signals and delivers a low-power location mode that sips less than 1 percent of your battery while in use. Next is Geofencing, which will allow devs to set up to 100 location-based triggers for app events. The third API is called Activity Recognition, which uses accelerometer data and machine learning to figure out when you’re walking, cycling or driving.
Follow all the latest Google I/O 2013 news HERE