There’s a new “maps sheriff” in town, and it’s cleaner, meaner, and sleek.

Google Maps

Recently, Google began rolling out an update to Maps that improves the design and integrates some of the “new” Google Maps.Maps 7.0.0Unfortunately, if you’re running an Android OS less than 4.0.3, you’re out of luck. Why haven’t you upgraded your phone, yet?

The update brings a new design, and improves live traffic updates.

One of the newer updates is the ability to “shake to send feedback.”

Shake to Send Feedback

I’m finding this feature rather annoying, so I turned it off.

You’ll also find that the offline maps mode is “missing.” No, not really, but it’s rather inconvenient to find: search bar > type or say “okay maps”.

Okay Maps Offline Cache

Maps will then cache the selected maps region.

If you’re not familiar with offline mode, you should be, especially if you’re going to be somewhere without internet service. I used the offline mode during our trip to Yellowstone, where cell coverage is spotty, at best.

My favorite improvement is probably the design of the navigation feature.

Google Maps Navigation

The design is cleaner and more easy to identify specific methods.

Hopefully, all of these improvements will also mean that Google is slowly integrating the crowdsourcing benefits of its recently-acquired subsidiary, Waze.

Jeff Taylor

I'm just an ordinary guy living an extraordinary life. I'm also an attorney and I blog about Android for lawyers. You can follow me on Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, or Google+.

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