Google has announced that its Google Maps for Android application has been updated with new features such as the Places icon and rich Place pages.Google Maps 4.6 with a new design for Place page reviews, more options to filter search results, and a Google Latitude real-time updating option.
Jackie Bavaro, Place Search’s product manager, wrote on the Google blog: “Today we’re introducing Place Search, a new kind of local search result that organizes the world’s information around places. We’ve clustered search results around specific locations so you can more easily make comparisons and decide where to go…
“Place Search results will begin appearing automatically on Google when we predict you’re looking for local information.”
She added: “In addition, you’ll find a new link for “Places” in the left-hand panel of the search results page so you can switch to these results whenever you want. For example, when I’m in New York, I love to go out and play foosball, but a search for [foosball] doesn’t automatically show me Place Search results. If I click “Places” I get the new view.
“We’ve made results like this possible by developing technology to better understand places. With Place Search, we’re dynamically connecting hundreds of millions of websites with more than 50 million real-world locations. We automatically identify when sites are talking about physical places and cluster links even when they don’t provide addresses and use different names.”
The last update to Google Maps for Android is that they have enabled real-time Latitude updating, making the service just a tad more creepy, but more useful if you like the option. As always, you have to opt-in to Latitude, so worry not if you’re a paranoid person or tend to be at places you should be.
The update is available now in Android Market if you don’t have automatic updating on your handset. We’re not sure what version of the OS you need to be running to actually get the update, but we expect Android 2.1+. Correct us if you’re on anything below Android 2.1.
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