Google announced the launch of version 5.0 of Google Maps for Android, which brings important advances such as the interaction with 3D buildings and the ability to work offline.
The new version of Google Maps also replaces part of the technology traditionally used on the platform, thus removing the famous gray squares that appeared when moving the map to loading areas.
“Until now, Google Maps has always downloaded the map as a set of small square images that come together to form the map you see. Now, we’re going to use vector graphics dynamically to draw the map on your device, ”explains the Mountain View giant.
With the presence of vector graphics, Google was able to implement major new features in this version, including the possibility of tilting the map in more than 100 cities around the world and displaying buildings in 3D. It is also possible to rotate the map with two fingers, making it easier to view and view the tilted map.
Another big news is the caching of the areas you visit most when you are connected via 3G or Wi-Fi. With that, Google Maps offers an offline preview to help in cases of non-existent connection.
“We are working hard to improve the algorithms and technology behind this new feature, over time you may notice that maps will work better in offline situations” says Google.
Google Maps Navigation
Offline functionality can also be found now in Google Maps Navigation. In case you lose your internet connection, Maps Navigation is able to automatically redirect you to a new path based on the cached maps.
“You’ll still need a connection to start a route, but if you miss a ride along the way, we’ll quickly get you back on track, even if you don’t have an Internet connection. We will be making this feature available gradually over the next few weeks. ”
Google Maps Mobile 5.0 is available on the Android Market and works on devices running Android 1.6 or higher. However, offline features and 3D buildings require Android 2.0 +, and some features may not be supported on some devices or countries.