It might not be Wednesday just yet, but that does not mean there are no Google app announcements available or updates en route. In fact, Google’s Maps seems to be the latest to receive an update and with it comes a couple of interesting features. The first notable feature on offer is more of an aesthetic one than a functional one. That said, it is still likely to be one that users will be grateful to receive. In short, the update sees Maps receiving a translucent status bar being added. This does now mean that the infamous black bar which had been in effect on Maps previously has now gone. As a result, the new updated app does make Maps look much cleaner and more in line with what is now expecting from Google’s app and services. Not to mention, more in line with the general Material Design principles. You can see an example of the before and after updating status bars in the image below.
The second notable feature, however, is one which is certainly more functional than aesthetical. This one reportedly sees the introduction of a new card based feature, which essentially provides users with information on the route that they are currently taking. Therefore, if you are travelling somewhere and Maps recognizes that you are currently taking a longer route, a small pop-up notification card will inform you of what might be slowing down the journey (upcoming traffic for instance) or advise of an alternative route which might prove to be a quicker option than the current route in use.
The updated version of the app seems to be now live on the Play Store (source link below) and as such, is available to download. If you have not received the update, pushed to your device yet, then do not worry, it will more than likely arrive soon enough. However, if you simply cannot wait for the update to land and would much rather check out the new notification system and get rid of that black status bar as soon as possible, then you can download the APK (signed by Google) by hitting the link below.