(Pocket-lint) – Google Maps, for many, is the gold standard in mobile mapping: it’s changed the way we navigate the world, an endless resource for exploring the places we want to go or have been.
Google is rolling out update to improve the visual quality of these maps, with a big change coming to more accurately depict natural features.
The new approach from Google uses the detailed satellite imagery Google has and categorises areas to more accurately assign them a colour that reflects what they are. In the past you’ll have often seen that non-urban areas might just be green, but now you’ll be able to see different densities of green, white for snow capped mountains and other colours to help you get a better sense of what’s actually there on the map.
Google has given some examples which you can find on the source link at the bottom of the page, highlighting that you can now see the pick out the desert regions or how you can see areas of vegetation to make these maps a lot more useful. Sure, flipping to the satellite view has always given a closer look at what’s actually there, but thanks to this update you should be able to see more from the standard map.
It’s not just nature that’s getting a boost. Google is also working on improving its city maps. These are already very good but future updates will bring things like relative road widths, pavements and traffic islands to make a city scape much more accurate.
These are important for people when planning routes, with the inclusion of pedestrian crossing or crosswalks – a bonus for those who need to know how they’re going to get over the road.
The enhanced city mapping is going to be coming to London, New York and San Francisco over the coming months, with plans to add more cities in the future.
Writing by Chris Hall.