Google Maps Said To Be Getting A Facelift That Could Appear At Google I/O

Posted: May 8, 2013 in Google, Technology
Tags: ,

20130508-210108.jpg Google’s bound to pull back the curtain on some
goodies at its annual I/O conference next week
(though it’s being characteristically quiet about the
whole thing), but could a redesigned version of
Google Maps be one of them? That’s what the folks
at the (completely unofficial) Google Operating System blog hint at — they’ve come into possession
of a pair of screenshots that supposedly depict
Google’s new approach to mapping, and if true they
point to some serious modifications. If true, then Google is ditching he traditional sidebar
altogether. Instead, the company may be putting
greater emphasis on the map itself and shifting
pertinent information — think location data, photos,
and Zagat reviews — to a series of cards that hover
in the top left corner of the screen. Oh, and the yellow streets are gone too. I’m just as
bummed as you are. As always, I’d recommend firmly grasping a grain of
salt as you pore over the images, but they the visual
advances seen in them seem just measured enough
to give them some credence. The images depict a
version of Google Maps that falls in line with some of
the other design choices the folks at Mountain View have been running with lately. Google’s been pushing those cards quite a bit lately
— Google Now was the first service to run with the
card metaphor, and the search giant recently
revamped its Google Play Store Android app to put
individual app and song listings into cards as well. We
haven’t really seen those cards invade the desktop yet (unless you count those right-aligned boxes that
Google’s Knowledge Graph results live in), but
persistent rumors and leaks point to a desktop web
version of Google Now that could go live any day
now. Hell, even Google Glass uses what the
company refers to as timeline cards to encapsulate and display information from Glass apps. All that
said, it would hardly be a shock to see Google turning
to Maps as the next service to get a card-centric
facelift. And hey, it’s not like Google has been all that great at
keeping its secrets behind closed doors lately. Who
could forget the completely unexpected Chromebook
Pixel reveal that had journos and pundits scratching
their heads back in February, not to mention the early
Google Play Store redesign leak and the prematurely released video that touted Google Now for iOS that
appeared just weeks later. This latest batch of
screenshots may leave you with more questions than
answers, but I suspect that all will be revealed before

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