Back near the middle of January of this year, Google started pushing out a new feature for its Google Maps application called Driving Mode that was accessible once a user started up navigation. Driving Mode essentially gave users relevant information about the drive such as traffic updates, and based on navigation history Driving Mode could suggest a destination for you. At the time of the initial push for this new feature, it was available to U.S. users as well as a few other countries, and now Google seems to be rolling it out globally to anywhere that Maps is available to install, although it’s worth noting that even though it seems to be rolling out to everyone, it could still take days or longer for it to reach all Maps users, which should be expected for any feature inclusion that has to be deployed on a such a large scale.
So far, Google seems to be rolling it out to users in Lebanon, Australia, and the Netherlands, which suggests that it is hitting other regions around the world as well. Which countries those are is unclear as Google hasn’t noted the rollout publicly or posted a list of places where it’s now being pushed to. Having said that, if you are a Maps user who has never had access to Driving Mode before, you can always open up Maps and check to see if it’s there.
In another recent Google Maps update that came through to the Android app in the beginning of last month, Google made the notifications for Navigation more prominent and easy to see as the notification now houses a green background with white text, likely to mimic the visual appearance of the signs on freeways and highways. That same update also introduced other changes, such as a faster and presumably simpler process for adding photos and reviews to places that you’ve been to. Google also added the option to enable automatic download of Maps for offline use, which some users may not like, but it does add a level of convenience that takes the worry away from those who might be forgetful.