Android’s Google Maps gets upgrades—and some potential issues.
Google Maps has enjoyed a push on the Android platform as of late, with the sixth update over an equal number of months. Updating Maps to version 4.4 gives the service a dedicated child app that adds a "Places" icon to the app launcher. It searches for places around you, filtered by establishment type, with the ability to add custom filters.
This is all touted as "An Even Better Way to Find Places Nearby", but the update does create its own redundancies. What exactly does Places bring to the table if the Maps' Places Directory already exists. The two apps are so similar that it’s hard to know tell why it’s logical to develop both. It confuses people just like how Goggles and Shopper puzzled us.
Worse, some users may be confused by the update. Which app will they use to search for a restaurant or coffee shop to head to? Will uninstalling Places affect the Maps installation in any way? Google may have to clarify how the daughter app concept works and why they made Places in the first place. While they’re at it, let’s just make the most out of the announcement. Simply upgrade Maps on the Market for free to try Places.