Google Maps Navigation

October 31, 2009

Google Maps NavigationEarlier this week Google announced Google Maps Navigation (Beta), and this is a real game changer. This is a turn-by-turn GPS navigation system, with voice guidance. It will first be available for Android 2.0 devices, and then the iPhone version will be released.

Google says, “When you use Google Maps Navigation, your phone automatically gets the most up-to-date maps and business listings from Google Maps — you never need to buy map upgrades or update your device. And this data is continuously improving, thanks to users who report maps issues and businesses who activate their listings with Google Local Business Center.”

This is an advancement in the cloud computing arena. This system depends completely on information located on the Internet, and is therefore always updated and always accurate.

Some features include:

  • Search in plain English (really!)
  • Search by voice (really x 2!)
  • Traffic view (with alternate route options)
  • Search along route
  • Satellite view
  • Street view
  • Car dock mode
  • This short little video explains the Google Maps Navigation system accurately and simply:

    Will this free GPS system put the likes of TomTom and Garmin out of business? Not necessarily. And not immediately anyway. It does change the industry though, drastically. And the markets have reacted already. TomTom’s shares fell by 20.8%, and Garmin’s fell by 16.4%.

    For more information on Google Maps Navigation, including screenshots go to

    Update 1 Nov 2009: NYTimes article: Hurting Rivals, Google Unveils Free Phone GPS