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Google Maps’ New Blue Beam Guides The Way

Google Maps is shining a blue beam on Android users’ travels as it seeks to make orientation easier.

Google Maps product manager Raja Ayyagari has advised of the change via a blog post, with the blue dot direction arrow being replaced by a shining blue beam, writing that users should “think of it as a flashlight guiding your travels”.

The beam also has the capability to indicate to a user how accurate their phone’s direction is at any given time.

“The narrower the beam, the more accurate the direction,” Ayyagari writes, advising that the wider the beam, the more likely it is that a “phone’s compass is temporarily uncalibrated, which means that its sensors aren’t working as they should be”.

This could be caused by common activities such as charging a phone or walking by a metal pole, Ayyagari notes, with users able to move their phone in a figure 8 motion a few times to get back on track.

The new feature comes on top of Google having made a number of recent updates to Google Maps.

Google recently unveiled an update delivering users a “cleaner look” and incorporating “areas of interest”.

Google stated that it had “removed elements that aren’t absolutely required”, such as road outlines, delivering “a cleaner look that makes it easier to see helpful and actionable information like traffic and transit”.

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