There’s now a better way to understand where you are in the world and which way you’re facing.
A Google Maps update rolling out this week improves the app by getting rid of the direction arrow in favor of utilizing a shining blue beam from the blue dot that indicates your location.
The animation you see at the start of this post is the gesture that Google wants you to do if you’d like the most accurate compass possible. The wider the shining blue beam, the less accurate Google Maps will be; therefore, you need to narrow that shinning blue beam by repeating a figure eight motion multiple times. Then your digital compass should be calibrated and ready for your travels.
Personally, this update greatly benefits someone like me who never knows if they’re going the right way in New York City. I’ve been lost and confused, having to ask for directions from a random person on the street, countless times in the Big Apple where every second is vital. Now I can just do that fun little gesture with my phone to get an accurate compass and head off, but it doesn’t mean I’m completely clear because I still have to use my eyes to figure out where exactly I need to be.
Other than the shining blue beam, Google Maps is unchanged. And it’s still better than any competing services.