Meet the new Google Maps and Google+

As well as new devices, music services and game services being announced at I/O, Google also showed off previews of updated Google Maps and Google+. The new Google Maps...

google-hangouts

As well as new devices, music services and game services being announced at I/O, Google also showed off previews of updated Google Maps and Google+.

The new Google Maps features include integrated lists from Zagat, more reviews in more places and a revamped directions and navigation’s experience which now includes real-time incidence alerts and dynamic rerouting. The new version of Maps for mobile will launch later this winter.

Google+

Google’s two-year, Google+ received 41 new features this morning, including a Pinterest-like look, auto-generated hashtags, “awesome” photo options and a streamlined messaging experience.

As well as all the user changes, Google has also made some new Android and iOS hooks such as Google+ Sign-In and APIs that tie Google+ Circles to Android gameplay. It might not sound like much, but this is massive for Google and will make Google+ the new official identity layer on hundreds of millions of handsets and tablets.

Hangouts, which merges messaging across desktop, Gmail, Android and iOS is one of the best new features, bringing a unified chat experience for all major platforms (except Windows Phone, sadly). Their plan is that they hope you will slowly gravitate to the Hangouts app with all your other Google services and then more and more of your interactions with people online will happen over Google+.

The whole setup including Google+ photos and its Pinterest like looks are designed to get you using Google’s social network, and in principle could work quite well.

 

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