Google Maps No Longer Supports Ride Share Direct Booking With Lyft and Uber

Ride Share Changes in Google Maps

Google has made a small but important change to Google Maps, no longer allowing you to book a ride sharing service like Lyft or Uber directly from within the app.  The change appears to be recent and is reflected in the support pages for the feature.  Now, instead of being able to book from within Google Maps, you have a link to go to the ride share apps from the providers.

The feature got a lot of hype when it was launched early last year and a way to prevent users from having to move around from app-to-app to book a car to pick them up.  You could also see ride share options to a destination you picked in Maps, such as a restaurant, from your location.

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Material Design Update to Google Maps Rolling Out – But Not to Everyone Yet

Google Maps for Android

A new Material Design look is in the process of rolling out for Google Maps on Android devices.  The update is a cloud-side change but you’ll want to make sure that you have the latest version of the app installed on your phone.  For those curious, that’s version 9.79.2.  Since this is a cloud-side update to Google Maps, not everyone is seeing the changes just yet.  It will likely be several days before all accounts get it.

Once you do, the changes will be immediately noticeable.  Gone are the square information blocks and icons on the Explore tab, replaced with bright, rounded corner information boxes and round icons.

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Google Maps Adds Language Support for 39 Languages and 1.2 Billion People

Google Maps for Android

Google Maps, one of Google’s apps with over 1 billion users, has been updated to bring nearly four dozen new languages.  The update is a cloud-side change so as long as you are running latest version of the app on your phone, you are good to go.

As for the 39 new languages, here is the full list:  Afrikaans, Albanian, Amharic, Armenian, Azerbaijani, Bosnian, Burmese, Croatian, Czech, Danish, Estonian, Filipino, Finnish, Georgian, Hebrew, Icelandic, Indonesian, Kazakh, Khmer, Kyrgyz, Lao, Latvian, Lithuanian, Macedonian, Malay, Mongolian, Norwegian, Persian, Romanian, Serbian, Slovak, Slovenian, Swahili, Swedish, Turkish, Ukrainian, Uzbek, Vietnamese, and Zulu.

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Google Map Maker Shutdown on March 31st

Google Maps Parking Information

With the bulk of the editing feature of Google Map Maker now in Google Maps, the company quietly shut down Map Maker last week, on March 31st.  The help page for Map Maker now indicates that the service is no longer available.  The news isn’t entirely a surprise.  Map Maker had been around since 2008 and gave users the ability to add places to Google Maps, edit places and edit road segments amongst other things.  All of those features are in Google Maps now so it somewhat made Map Maker redundant.

On the help page, Google points out that they will continue to brings more features to Google Maps from Map Maker.

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Google Maps Location Sharing Rolls Out to The Masses

Google Maps Location Sharing

After being announced last week followed by a limited roll out, the new location sharing feature of Google Maps has rolled out to the masses.  Users can expect the feature to be enabled in the Google Maps app shortly if it isn’t there already.  You will find the new feature located on the menu of the app.

The feature works cross platform (and on the web) and allows you to share your location or your status on a journey with others that you choose.  That sharing can be limited to a specific time period for sharing while the sharing of your journey will automatically end when you arrive at your destination.  It is more-or-less a return of the old Latitudes product but is more refined.

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Google Shuttering Location Sharing in Google+

Google+ Location Sharing Shutdown

A few weeks ago, Google announced that they would be rolling out location sharing in Google Maps.  The new feature will allow you to share your location with friends and family for a set period of time and it will work across Android and iOS devices.  As a part of that effort, it appears the company is starting to shut down location sharing within Google+.

Google+ has had the ability to share your location for a long while but if you attempt to use it now, you are greeted with a splash page indicating that the feature is moving to Maps.  The tricky bit is that it hasn’t fully rolled out to Google Maps yet either.

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Google Maps Enabling Trip and Real Time Location Sharing

Google Maps Parking Information

Google Maps is in the process or rolling out a location sharing feature that you may actually want to use.  Location Sharing is something that has been a bit spotty for both Android and iOS with Apple probably having it figured out best with Find My Friends.  But, as is usually the case with Apple, it is only for fellow iOS users.  That is why this new feature in Google Maps is so exciting.  It works cross platform between Android and iOS.

In a nutshell, here is how it works.  When the feature rolls out to you, there will be a Share Location feature in the menu.  Tap it then select the contacts you want to see your location in real time.  You can set it up to share your location in real time for a set amount of time or until you turn the feature off.  Once you start sharing, your selected contacts will get a notification on their phone and when they open up Google Maps, they will be able to see where you are in real time.

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Google Maps Update Brings Real Time Commute Information

Google Maps Parking Information

A new update to Google Maps for Android is rolling out and with it comes a much improved places near you tab and real time commute information.  All of this information can be found by swiping up in Google Maps which will now display a three-tab page.  The first tab is Places which has been in Maps for a while now.  This gives you local places such as places to eat, have a drink, ATMs and fuel stations that are near you.  The Places tab not only serves as a great place to discover something new but also gives you places that you have been before so you can revisit them.  Functionally, you won’t find much difference in this release over what is there now.  It has just been cleaned up a bit and put into this more contemporary navigation tab model.

The new driving tab is designed to give you real time ETAs to home and work.  It also gives you nearby traffic conditions and expected delays.  Equally, if you want real time traffic information but don’t need turn-by-turn navigation, you can tap the Start Driving button and go directly into Driving Mode in Google Maps.  For this feature to work, you need to have stored your home and work address with your Google account.  You can actually set those up within Maps under Settings>Your Places.

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