HERE Maps, the mobile map app made by Nokia and sold last year for a fairly hefty $3 billion has just received its first major update since the sale and as part of the update sees the branding of the app changed in the process. It’s now called HERE WeGo. The app’s developers believe the name change was necessary as they felt the Nokia’s “HERE Maps” was too generic to base a brand around. More specifically, searching for “HERE Maps” online also turns out a number of others apps which the HERE WeGo team describes as “lesser”. Another reason for the name change is directly related to the way users actually use the mapping app. As HERE’s Ian Delaney puts it, not a lot of regular users launch the app in order to look at a map. Instead, they used HERE Maps to find the quickest route to a specific destination, so the developers wanted the new name to reflect the core use.
As for new features, the update brings HERE WeGo to version 2.0.10471 and is packed with quite a lot of them. For starters, the app’s home screen has now been changed to a simple “Where to?” question with an answer box. So, the idea is to launch the app, type the destination you want to reach, choose a mode of transportation and start following directions. One step less than it used to take and you also no longer need to scroll all the way down to the “Find a route” option. HERE WeGo now also offers the ride-sharing company Car2Go as a mode of transportation and has been updated with a bunch of new data on taxi services throughout the world. Last but not least, HERE WeGo now also features elevation data for giving a more accurate representation of a certain route to people who prefer walking and bike riding to motor vehicles.
All in all, the update completely redesigns the user experience of the app which seems to be the underlying motive behind the name change as well. It’s going to be interesting to see where HERE WeGo goes from here, as it has recently attracted attention from potential major investors like Amazon who’d certainly have their own ideas on how to proceed with the future development of the app.