Google brings voice-guided biking navigation to Maps for Android
Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) is bringing expanded mobile biking directions and navigation to its Maps for Android application, adding turn-by-turn voice guidance as well as new mapping data spanning 10 additional international markets.
Google Maps first introduced biking directions for the U.S. and Canada in 2010--the app now encompasses Australia, Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland and the U.K. "Mount your device on your handlebars to see the turn-by-turn directions and navigation, or use speaker-mode to hear voice-guided directions," suggests Google Maps software engineer Larry Powelson.
With the update, Google Maps for Android now covers 329,000 miles/530,000 kilometers of biking lines worldwide. Dark green lines on the map identify dedicated bike trails and paths with no motor vehicles, light green lines identify streets with bike lanes and dashed green lines spotlight other streets recommended to cyclists. "Biking navigation even helps you avoid steep hills," Powelson adds. Riders may also upload additional trails, lanes and suggested routes.
Google states that millions of users access Maps for Android each day. As of earlier this year, the service has provided 50 billion kilometers of turn-by-turn directions.
- read this Google Official Blog entry
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