Google has taken to stealth updating Search and Maps for Android while attention is squarely placed on CES this week. The updates for Maps for Android center on improved battery life with Latitude now featuring faster refreshes for locations and adds the ability to guess location based on vehicle speed if the GPS signal is lost during a drive and offers more public transportation route options for supported public transit systems.
Google has also updated its Search for Android to feature faster, smoother performance, with an updated and simplified user interface. Suggestions for search are now grouped by type, with web suggestions at the top as well as country-specific suggestions and search results for all countries with Google domains with long press capability added to remove history items.
Some additional tips from Google on the new Search for Android:
1. Tap the arrow to the right of a search suggestion or history item to add it to your search term before searching.
2. Get suggestions from other apps on your phone – check out searchable items in Search settings.
3. Long press on home screen to add the Google Search widget, if you don’t have it already, to access search faster.
With the latest update to Maps, Google is seeking to address the biggest issue with the application in battery life compared to previous versions as well as adding additional features for users of public transport while Search being updated for Gingerbread and earlier versions for Android is Google’s attempt to continually maintain the Search app for those versions of Android while gradually transitioning to the newly merged Ice Cream Sandwich.