Wednesday, November 06, 2013

Pegman Is Back

The new look Google Maps is being updated today to try and address some of the criticisms that have been thrown its way.

The updates are being rolled out - starting today and over the next few weeks. They haven't rolled out as far as my desktop, so I haven't been able to test any of these updates yet. However these are the updates that Google are reporting:

1. Pegman is Back

One of the most biggest criticisms of the new look Google Maps has been the inability to see where Street View is available. For me the unique selling point of Google Maps is Street View. It is therefore a huge relief to see Pegman has been resurrected.

Pegman will now appear in the lower right corner of Google Maps. If you click on Pegman you can see all the areas with Pegman highlighted in blue.

2. Preview Directions

Another area in which the new Google Maps has been really messy is in directions. Today's new updates will allow you to preview step-by-step directions. With the update you will be able to click on any step to view that location on the map. When you search for driving directions, you will also now see real-time traffic and incidents on the map, including data reported by Waze.

3. Google Earth Tours

Google is promoting the new Google Earth view with Google Earth tours. These tours seem to be designed to promote Google Earth's 3d terrain and buildings. I still miss the flat and oblique satellite views and 45 degree aerial views of the old Google Maps but I guess that they are gone for good.

There is no return for terrain view in this update but I hold out hope that terrain view may return in a later update.

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