Google Maps is therefore a continuously evolving piece of software that has become a must-have program for many drivers out there who just want an easy and convenient way to reach their destinations.
But as we will, Google will make Google Maps an even more advanced solution, so the search giant is working on several important updates to the app while we talk, some of which are only available to users on Android or Android Auto.
And while ETAs are not available right now, we expect more information to come to the headlines sooner rather than later, especially as Google is making some good progress with their development.Android Driving Mode
The first feature currently in use and whose development is progressing fairly rapidly is the new driving mode powered by Google Assistant and comes with the navigation app.
Currently available in the US, Germany and a few other countries as a preview exclusive to Android users, Google Maps Driving Mode has a simple role: it converts the navigation app into a driving hub that also acts as the home for everything else you needed for the steering wheel, including music apps, calls and messages.
If you have previously used Android Auto for phones, you should definitely find the experience known because this is the application that served as the starting point for creating this feature.
When enabled, Driving Mode enables a new Google Maps user interface that provides one-touch access to everything including phone calls and music controls. Almost like Android Auto for phones, with one big difference: Google Maps is the only navigation app allowed this time around.
As we said, there is no ETA as to when this feature can get started, but since it is offered as a preview, there is a chance that it will reach more users by the end of the year.
Fuel efficient routes
Another major change for Google Maps (and which has already been confirmed by Google) is the way the application determines routes when setting up the navigation application.
Right now, Google Maps is trying to find the fastest route to a particular destination by examining data such as traffic jams, maximum speed, and similar criteria.
In the future, however, Google Maps will replace this new model with one that is specifically focused on fuel-efficient routes, where Google explains that they want to give users directions that help them reduce fuel consumption.
The goal is to eventually reduce your CO2 footprint, even if it means Google Maps may give you slower routes. The bad news for those who do not like this change is that the new route model is enabled by default, but on the other hand, Google will allow users to return to the original configuration manually from the settings screen.
This feature will be available on both iPhone and Android, and Google says it will study road tilt and traffic congestion to ensure it is as accurate as possible.
Dedicated Android Auto switch between day and night
In addition to enhancing the experience on Android and iPhone, Google is also committed to further polishing Google Maps on Android Auto and CarPlay.
The next in line to get such an update is Android Auto, as Google Maps may soon receive a dedicated day and night mode that switches to work independently of the rest of the system.
Right now, Google Maps adapts to the system settings so that it can automatically switch to the dark mode when you turn on the headlights if a factory-installed Android Auto head unit is available. In the future, however, Google will give users more control in this regard, so Google Maps will receive a new option to manually switch from day to night mode upon request directly from the main unit.