Google Maps Navigation

Now, Google even knows where it’s going – at least, if you lead an Android phone with the free Google Maps Navigation to the destination.

And still the Google navigation is likely conquered in the long term an the piece of the market, even if the spread of Android smartphones is not as far advanced.

Now also in Germany

Google has launched the navigation service setting on the Google maps earlier this year, but initially only in the United States. The service now also in Germany is available since June, the software can be loaded via the Android market. About their own icon to get direct access to the target input and can start navigating with just a few clicks.

Also on the conventional maps application, you can initiate the guidance by selecting a point on the map or a route planning – easier it is hardly. Also the rest of the application is typical of Google very reduced, you don’t find the setting options that are familiar from other Navigation systems in bulk here.

But this does not mean that there were no facilities: the edited in different ways and fine adjusted routes can be, the system calculates multiple routes to the choice, next to the map also a satellite image as a background – viewable also in 3-D mode. There’s a waypoint list and a very flexible search. Everything important is there, however: one step from a mobile navigation on the Google Maps Navigation, you feel first circumcised.

Core competence: Search

You can tell Google’s experience in searching and finding much at the destination entry that consists of a single line of input . You type in an address, she will in a few seconds found, you can search but also General “Restaurants” or a specific location with the full name, if it is known. So wonderful, that the traditional input – have been forgotten after city street – number in the nu a fast Internet connection of mobile phones provided, because without that nothing works.

Benefited also the route calculation: routes cross through Germany has the test cell phone HTC legend ever in less than ten seconds ready. An data flat is also needed – also for long routes while only a few megabytes are transferred, but memory does not exist just like Nokia’s Ovi maps, the Internet connection must be constantly maintained. This is of course a handicap during foreign trips that data roaming is still expensive.

Liquid and quickly

The guidance clearly manages the Google Maps Navigation thanks to liquid map display, the flipped 3-D representation acts but something unusual at first glance. Also the satellite image view is tilted, which looks nice, but rather contributes less to the overview. Thanks to the clear arrows and the optical guidance is still top the fast map rotation. A speed or lane is missing (still).

The speech output is realized via a separately to warm up tool, but unfortunately all the contents of the bending signs read, what is too much of a good. Together with the very quaek-speaker of the HTC legend, the acoustic guidance so that was no highlight. The routes in the city were somewhat awkwardly, over land, everything was okay, however. Also good: Comes a phone conversation, continues the Navi in the background.

Good for occasional navigate

The Google Maps Navigation convinces with easy handling and handsome appearance, but lacks features and has still a need for improvementin many places. A full fledged GPS units can yet replace them – but that also not everyone needs.