Google Maps Gaining More Detail With New Color-Mapping Algorithmic Technique

Google today announced a major update for Google Maps, which will see the feature gaining more detail and granularity to better highlight natural features and terrain.

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Google is introducing a new color-mapping algorithmic technique that can take the high-definition satellite imagery used for Google Maps and turn it into what Google says is a "comprehensive, vibrant map of an area at a global scale."

The updated Google Maps app will provide a better look at an area's natural features, making it easier to see beaches, lakes, rivers, oceans, vegetation, and even mountaintops. Color-mapping works by using computer vision to identify natural features from satellite imagery, which are then analyzed and assigned a range of colors.

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According to Google, the new Google Maps design is available in all 220 countries and territories that Google Maps supports, and in the near future, there will also be more detailed views of roads for pedestrians.

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Google Maps will provide accurate road shapes and widths, along with the locations of sidewalks, crosswalks, and pedestrian islands. Detailed street maps will be coming to London, New York, and San Francisco in the coming months and will expand to other cities later.

Apple has also been working to improve the detail shown in the Apple Maps app, and has rolled out redesigned Apple 2.0 Maps across the United States. This year, those mapping updates are also set to come to Canada, Ireland, and the UK.

The updated maps provide more detailed roads, buildings, parks, marinas, beaches, airports, and more, to make it easier to navigate areas with these features.

Top Rated Comments

gsmornot Avatar
14 weeks ago
I just hope it correctly reflects that my lawn is greener than my neighbors.
Score: 42 Votes (Like | Disagree)
one more Avatar
14 weeks ago
New Google Maps = 220 countries, Apple Maps = 1 (the US) + 3 more to come “later this year”. Honestly, Apple...
Score: 26 Votes (Like | Disagree)
johannnn Avatar
14 weeks ago
Consumers are the winner here. I love to see Apple Maps and Google Maps constantly enhancing their apps all the time.
Score: 18 Votes (Like | Disagree)
4jasontv Avatar
14 weeks ago
I find Google maps great for exploring details on a desktop, but for actual navigation I still prefer Apple Maps.
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
genovelle Avatar
14 weeks ago


It’s cute that the article mentions Apple Maps at the end as if it’s a viable
Competitor. The only reason it’s a competitor is cause Apple includes Apple Naps automatically in all of its devices.

But Google Maps has worked hard over the years to bring us great features.

Apple helped them build their mobile product as Iphone was by far the most used for years until Google decided to build a competing phone and then use turn by turn navigation as well as other features to limit the appeal of iPhone against android. They forced Apple into the maps business. When the 3rd party services were not working as they wanted. The embarked on controlling the data too. You have clearly not used Apple Maps in the last 3 years. The experience is far superior to Google.
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)
HappyDude20 Avatar
14 weeks ago
It’s cute that the article mentions Apple Maps at the end as if it’s a viable
Competitor. The only reason it’s a competitor is cause Apple includes Apple Naps automatically in all of its devices.

But Google Maps has worked hard over the years to bring us great features.
Score: 7 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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