Since last year, Google has continuously updated its iPhone and iPad apps with small screen modules. Google Maps is now the latest with version 5.74 and sees a couple of useful iOS widgets.
The first is a standard search widget called “Find Places Nearby.” Google has used the same layout for the Search app and Chrome. It starts with a pill-shaped search box that opens the app and keyboard directly.
In the meantime, there are shortcuts for “Home” and “Work” addresses to quickly get directions. Finally, Google Maps offers others for restaurants, gas, groceries and coffee that start a search nearby at your current location.
The other Google Maps iOS widget is “Know Before You Go.”
Prior to today’s update, Google Maps supported the previous widget format and offered four: Traffic, public transit departures (nearby stations), travel time (home and work) and local guides. The functionality of Trafikk is present today, but the others have not yet been migrated.
Release notes for version 5.74 indicate that Google plans to add more Maps for iOS widgets:
In this release, we launch our first set of home screen widgets to help you plan and navigate to your destination.
Compared to Android, the widgets on iOS are more interactive. The first-party platform uses widgets as shortcuts for specific directions, starts driving mode, position sharing and jumps to nearby traffic in the app.
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