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Google Maps brings free GPS navigation to Android 2.0 handsets

by Parm Mann on 28 October 2009, 14:46

Tags: Maps Navigation, Google (NASDAQ:GOOG)

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Google has potentially shaken the world of GPS navigation today by announcing Google Maps Navigation - a free navigation application designed for Android 2.0 devices.

Although users have for years made use of Google Maps on a variety of mobile devices, Google Maps Navigation expands the basic mapping functionality with a number of GPS-based features such as turn-by-turn voice guidance.

Google claims the service has been built from the ground up to take advantage of mobile internet connectivity, adding that Google Maps Navigation will take full advantage of Google Maps' existing functionality - including Search, Traffic View, Satellite View and Street View.

In addition to its solid foundation, Google Maps Navigation has another major advantage compared to traditional GPS navigation devices such as TomTom; as a cloud-based service, Google's maps will automatically keep up to date, and the completely-free service will be funded by Google Search. Google hasn't, however, specified if an offline mode will be available, suggesting that Google Maps Navigation is likely to warrant a sizable mobile data plan.

The app is first expected to appear on the Motorola Droid - one of the world's first Android 2.0 devices - but Google has suggested that support for other platforms is a possibility.

Unfortunately, Google Maps Navigation will initially be limited to the United States. Check out the Google-provided demo video below.

HEXUS Forums :: 18 Comments

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Yes, they should be. That's amazing. I want an Android phone now.
Do you need a dataplan to use this? That could be the achilles heel to it if so.. Although I have one there are times where you lose connectivity and that's not good when driving.
Yeah you would do, but I'd hope Google thought about that and do some prefetching.
Well, there are some free ones but this tops it because its GOOGLE and everyone knows google :P.
Tomtom etc should be worried, they will be under threat now since google is in play!.
i get free internet with O2 so i just need to get an android phone… waiting for snapdragon and tegra stuff to get more mainstream :D