DIGITAL NEWS: New Google Maps app launches

Google is introducing a new Google Maps app for Android smartphones and tablets, also coming soon to iPhone and iPad.

The new app will include an Explore functionality. This is a fast and easy way to visually browse and discover new places without even typing. By tapping the search box and users can see cards showing places to eat, drink, sleep and shop. 

Secondly, the internet giant has enhanced navigation by adding two new features to help navigate around traffic. Users can now see traffic reports, and while on the road the app will alert the driver if a better route becomes available and reroute you to your destination faster.

Meanwhile, Google has added a new five star rating system which allows users to read and compare how others rate places such as restaurants, bars and cafes. 

However, the search engine has retired Latitude and check-ins. These features not be a part of the new Google Maps app, and will stop functioning in older versions by August 9. 

Daniel Graf, director, Google Maps  said in a blog post: “Helping you find great places is what we love to do. And as more of us use mobile phones and tablets in our daily lives, information that’s useful to you isn't just about what you need, but also where you might find it.

"Today’s update is an exciting step forward for Google’s Maps – one that we hope will make it faster and easier for you to explore and discover places you want to go.”