You have to love Google’s constant updates to their Maps software. They never seem to forget about Symbian S60 devices when many companies pretend Symbian doesn’t exist. The newest feature coming to Google Maps on the E71 and all other Nokia smartphones is voice search. This new feature combined with street view, synced favorites to your account, transit times/directions, and much more makes Google Maps one of the most useful applications available for your smartphone.
My Thoughts & Results
Tell your phone where you want to go and you’ll get results. I’ve tested this new feature alot on my N97 and E71 and it’s amazing how accurate Google is at understanding your voice. And right now my voice is completely shot. I’m battling a cold so it’s raspy and horrible sounding. I’ve attended two LA Kings playoff games in the past five days, cheering wildly for the team. My voice is weak. Still, Google Maps had about a 90% accuracy rate in my tests. I even tried once with the windows down and radio on in the car. Granted the radio was not turned up loud but still there were outside noises and it didn’t have a problem. I even searched for addresses. Four digits and a weird street name, along with the city. Google Maps handled it well.
It seems a few small things in the UI have also been updated to give it a much cleaner look. I love the way Google Maps now integrates with my Google account, showing my favorites both on the PC and phone.
How To Use
The Google Mobile Blog tells you how to use this feature:
Search by voice lets you easily search for anything by simply speaking your search terms instead of typing them. Just open Google Maps, press your phone’s “call” button, and clearly speak your search term like “Park Plaza.” Search by voice works with all the kinds of searches Google Maps for mobile already supports, including places, addresses (1600 Amphitheatre Parkway), specific businesses (The French Laundry), or types of businesses (sushi restaurants new york).
Go to m.google.com/maps from your phone’s browser to get the newest version. Let us know what you think and if you have similar results.