Google Maps news: higher quality and better vector maps, speed limits and, coming soon, orders

Google Maps Platform


Google Maps is developing to improve both the cartography of the maps and its StreetView mode, strengthening its position against other browsing options. We shall comment on main innovations so that you can take advantage of them in your business.

Google Maps is a service with which we are all familiar either for private or professional reasons, and that is convenient thanks to the possibility of displaying much more information on the map than any other geographical positioning provider. It also has the added value of the services it provides businesses through its contents customisation options.


It is also a product that evolves and Intelligence Partner always keeps track of this continuous innovation for the benefits it can bring to our customers.

Before the summer, they announced map updates due to the launch of the new Landsat 8 satellite designed to capture images with greater definition for both Google Maps and Google Earth. In particular, about one petabyte of information totalling more than 700 billion pixels has been gathered. The incorporation of these images is not immediate to all regions of the world, but we shall soon start to enjoy these improvements in the quality when we view this app.


A recent addition has been the introduction of speed limits, permanently updated and in real time based on the position of our vehicle. In addition, there are the corresponding warnings when you drive over the speed limit.


Another interesting innovation is the renewal of their vector maps, which are now clearer, more convenient for viewing the maps and you can highlight what we really care about: points of interest. They have removed the contours of the roads, the typography of the names of the streets, points of interest, companies, petrol stations, etc. has been improved in such a way that all these details are now much clearer.

At the same time, they have applied a colour scheme the distinguishes natural environments (forests, lakes, parks, etc.) from manmade elements (streets, highways, hospitals, schools), intuitively providing information on the environment and what we shall find in the area we are viewing.


In line with the use of colours, there is another interesting nuance, known as points of interest. In order to highlight areas where there is some particular type of commercial, hospitality (restaurants or bars)… activity, an algorithm will cover the geo-positioning of these data in real time and translate that activity into colour changes ranging from the usual grey to orange. That colour will remain on the maps regardless of the zoom level applied at every moment so that we can identify this activity even when the details do not appear written in the area, which will encourage us to zoom in the see what is actually there.


Finally, the StreetView rendering and controls have been improved in such a way that they have improved transitions when moving, the aspect of the elements represented, and even the names of the streets and items displayed, separating them from the controls. All this is available through the updated Google Maps API.

These developments not only facilitate the more intuitive interpretation of the geo-positioned information, they help companies get the most out in their commercial activities. At Intelligence Partner, we are ready to place them all at your disposal to enhance the presence and activities of your business.


We are finally waiting for another interesting functionality: the possibility of making orders directly from the map, something that already exists when ordering a taxi, for example. There is talk of greater integration with Apps to order fast food and restaurants since the beta includes references to online purchasing processes. We shall address everything that can have a positive impact on our customers in our blog as soon as possible.


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