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Google Maps update improves Street View on mobile

The latest update to Google Maps brings optimizes Street View for mobile devices by improving visual and navigation for a much smoother experience.

Published onAugust 19, 2016


Street View is one of the key features of the Google’s Maps app, and the company has been listening to suggestions from users on how to perfect it for both mobile and desktop. After experimenting with the Maps’ JavaScript API, Google has now tweaked it to bring improvements in transitions, display, and touch support, as well as new and improved features.

Google has added more animation frames, which allows you to view street transitions smoothly without stuttering effects. Instead of the curved edges of buildings and incorrect angles of objects that you used to get from the old renderer,  you can enjoy precise images due to a 360-degree model of all locations.

With the use of Web Graphics Library (WebGL) imagery, you get a better frame rate and rendering when viewing places and objects on Street View, making the images appear more real. So, that street which used to look curved in Street View on your mobile because of the old renderer will now appear perfectly straight.

Support for touch-based interactions in Street View is probably the best thing to have happened for mobile users. You no longer have to press the + or – buttons for zooming, or control the movement by clicking arrows on the ground. The update brings much-needed features like pinch-to-zoom and double-tap-to-go that have been available in the Maps app on Android.

The update also brings motion tracking on your mobile phone so that you can look around streets and parks by simply moving your device in the direction you’re headed. You also get to see cleaner street names and labels, and along with the existing directional arrows, you can see the next landing spot marked by a small X at the cursor.

Google will be rolling out the update today, and promises that the new and improved Street View renderer will give you a sense of what it’s like to visit a place in real life.

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