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Google Maps Nav hits Android 1.6 ahead of iPhone

updated 03:50 pm EST, Mon November 23, 2009

Maps Navigation brings most features to 1.6

Google today gave Android a further edge by porting Google Maps Navigation to Android 1.6 phones. The update gives the T-Mobile G1, myTouch 3G and some international devices support for the turn-by-turn navigation system that was previously limited to the only Android 2.0 device, the Motorola Droid.

It lacks a handful of features that depend on Android 2.0, like voice recognition, but still supports the bird's eye and street view perspectives. Google also suggests the app's unique option of creating shortcuts to locations on the home screen to skip typing directions by hand.

Updating the navigation app requires a free download of a beta version of Google Maps from Android Market.

The update gives Android a further advantage in smartphone-based navigation as it provides advanced, free directions that don't usually exist elsewhere. Google has said it's talking with Apple to bring the feature to the iPhone, preferably through the native Maps software written by Apple itself, but hasn't said how close it may be to implementing the feature or with what limits. iPhones support speech commands but aren't necessarily guaranteed to get the same level of features.

by MacNN Staff



  1. c4rlob

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Unfortunate timing

    ...for Google to be introducing this app for Android phones at the same time that AT&T and Apple launch ads highlighting the inability of those phones to access data and voice at the same time. The irony is that Verizon's attack ads may end up doing more harm to Verizon than to AT&T, because it forced both Apple and AT&T to hit back at Verizon's limitations.

  1. wingdo

    Joined: Dec 1969



    If Verizon's network is so bad, why were they Apple's first choice for the iPhone? Why is Apple STILL trying to get the iPhone to Verizon?

    Verizon's 3G network rocks, AT&T's is fine *if* you can get it, and *if* calls don't drop.

  1. vasic

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Fudging it a bit...

    ..."Why is Apple STILL trying to get the iPhone to Verizon?"

    Where did you hear THAT? Apple is conspicuously quiet on it, and the only noise comes from Verizon.

    We DON'T know if Apple's first choice really was Verizon; that story had been going around the blogosphere, but has still not been confirmed by any authoritative source.

    The only people still trying (actually, hoping) to get iPhone on Verizon are Verizon users who for some reason don't want AT&T. While they are a very noisy bunch, they are still rather small group. The rest are very happy with iPhone on AT&T (apparently, huge numbers -- check customer satisfaction for iPhone).

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