New Google Maps Build Hints At New Commute-Related Features

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Beta testers of Google Maps recently started receiving the 9.53.0 build that contains traces of several new features oriented at facilitating commutes, a teardown of the app's APK file revealed. Portions of the newly added code that can be found in the app suggest that the Mountain View-based tech giant is in the process of developing a new notification that will relay traffic conditions on one's commute route in real time. The feature is meant to work regardless of whether a user is traveling to or from work and will seemingly rely on the app's existing real-time traffic functionality that will simply be condensed and served in the form of a standard Android system notification. The system itself is somewhat similar to the one that's already supported by the Google app and the two solutions likely rely on the same server-side backend. Provided that assumption is accurate, the Alphabet-owned company may opt to exclude the feature from the Google app in the future once the same functionality rolls out to all Google Maps users.

Parts of the code present in the latest build of Google's mobile navigation tool indicate that developers are currently working on another commute-related feature as the app might soon be updated with the ability to set means of transportation for commuters. The current version of the service only supports driving and public transit modes, but the Internet giant is reportedly looking to expand on those options in the future, though it's currently unclear what kind of functionalities will be on offer in later versions of the app. Likewise, it remains to be seen whether Google will provide users with the option of planning commute routes that use multiple transportation methods, which is a feature that some Google Maps users have been requesting for a while now. The only frontend change visible in the new beta build of Google maps is a toggle for mass transit station notifications that can be seen in the gallery below.

As one of the company's flagship products, Google Maps is updated with new content and improvements on a regular basis and will likely continue enjoying its creator's support in the future. More details about the service's upcoming features might be revealed later this week at Google I/O 2017.

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