It has been awhile now since Apple made a power play move with Apple Maps to replace Google Maps, but not many people have forgotten that disaster. Google Maps has been the industry leader for worldwide mapping services for many years now, and it is getting ready for a fresh new look.
The left sidebar, one of the staples of Google Maps’ desktop interface, is going to be leaving us soon. The map is about to take up the full screen, with more of a focus on simplicity. New colors and icons are going to be coming with this update as well. Many of these updates are likely to carry over to the mobile app as well, as Google is a fan of uniform layouts if at all possible. The full screen map will be particularly nice, allowing us to use much more of our screen for the most important part of the Google Maps service.
It appears as well that Google Maps is going to have more of a focus on locations within the map as well. Directions look to be moved into a tab that can be pulled up in the browser version, with the same usual route overlay on the map.
You’ll also be able to limit your search area more effectively. Instead of Google searching the entire world for a business that you’re looking for, you can have it narrowed down to certain cities to search in for every search or for specific searches.
Google has been a leading innovator in the navigation market for quite some time now, and it’s nice to at least see the desktop get a new, fresh look. Though people will likely complain about the change, it does make the map easier to see, getting rid of some of the clutter that was on the screen before.
There is no official word on when the new interface is going to launch. Google is having their I/O conference next week, so there is a good chance that the new interface will be officially unveiled there. Expect to hear about this and other important updates for the Android and Chrome OS at the conference which begins on Wednesday May 15th. The conference goes until Friday May 17th.
Source: Google Operating System