You might just be seeing a new version of Google Maps in your Play Store downloads today - Google has updated the app from version 7.3 to 7.4. There's not a whole lot of new stuff going on inside, certainly not compared to the cavalcade of UI changes that happened earlier this year. A few tuned gestures, a few refreshed UI elements, and that's about it. APK downloads below.

2013-11-08 12.47.09

If you're a regular Maps user, you'll notice that the one-finger zoom gestures have been reversed. In the newly-updated app you double-tap, hold, then drag down to zoom in (the reverse was true before now). It makes a little more sense than previously. The same is true for the double-tap and drag gesture which adjusts the vertical view: now dragging down with two fingers will give you a bird's eye view, while dragging up will adjust the view to about 45 virtual degrees.

Screenshot_2013-11-07-21-46-04 Screenshot_2013-11-07-21-46-00

Old on the left, new on the right.

The Explore menu has had a few very slight visual changes, capitalizing the categories and adding a few icons, with a new "More button" below. There's also a background image for Explore, which puts the focus on the icons rather than the view.

Screenshot_2013-11-07-21-44-19 Screenshot_2013-11-07-21-44-12

Under the hood a few of the icons for Offers have been updated with a slightly more modern look. That's about it - there's nothing in here that warrants rushing to download the new APK.

offers_core_ic_info_show1 offers_core_ic_info_touch offers_core_image_placeholder

Old Offers icons

1 2 3

Updated Offers icons

Of course if you want to, we're not going to stop you. The API 18+ download below is for Android device running 4.3 or higher, while API 15 is for devices running Android 4.0.3 or higher.

Google Maps for API 18+

Google Maps for API 15+

Jeremiah Rice
Jeremiah is a US-based blogger who bought a Nexus One the day it came out and never looked back. In his spare time he watches Star Trek, cooks eggs, and completely fails to write novels.
  • troll master flexer

    tu tes faite troller le meet ball sac mofo

  • Paulo Fidalgo

    I've uninstalled Maps due battery hunger... More than the double of battery eaten comparing to the screen (the second biggest battery eater).

    • Sqube

      Um... I think there's something wrong with your phone. What device do you have? Running a custom ROM?

      I can't understand how Maps is using twice as much battery as your screen unless your screen is basically never on. That's very weird.

      • Paulo Fidalgo

        I'm using an unofficial cyanogenmod on HTC Desire HD. I will investigate to see if I can get it solved.

        • Nate

          Greenify it! :D

  • Itchy_Robot

    So, 'My Maps' is officially never ever coming back I assume. It seems obvious that Google is more interested in giving me tools to find my local commerce than to allow me to pin and organize my own points of interest. What a shame.

    • miri

      It' come back when it comes back.

      • Ray

        Thanks, Captain Obvious.

    • Name
    • tlingitsoldier

      It'll probably come back around the same time they add access to Locations (previously Latitude) in Maps. Which is where it belongs. Why should I have to go to Google+ to see where someone is located when I'm already in the Maps app?

  • Mike

    ...and I still shall remain on 6.14.4...so much better.

  • Gabriel Hart

    Good to know they reversed the one-finger-zoom... I thought I was going crazy last night when using Maps.

    • guest

      One thing you all haven't mentioned is the fact that the new version has access to all of your contacts, your call records, and other personal information they have no business accessing. It also leaves the user vulnerable to hackers.

  • Drew M

    Personally, I find dragging up for zooming out to be backwards--intuitively, it should zoom in just as the mouse wheel up zooms in on the desktop.

    • Dennis Ulijn

      i thought that as well, but I downloaded the APK, used it, and it worked as I expected. I can see how both ways could be natural.

      • pfmiller

        I prefer the new way, but either could be adjusted to easily enough. The biggest problem however is that it was not consistent with the zoom gesture in chrome. It was super confusing when switching between those two apps.

        • CrazyPaladin

          Wait, didn't chrome already switch the gesture a while back?

          • pfmiller

            Yeah, I think so. Anyway, it seems everyone is on the same page again finally.

        • Freak4Dell

          Yeah, I'm just super glad it's consistent now. Personally, down to zoom in makes more sense to me, but I could have gotten used to either way as long as it was the same for both apps. Now they need to make this the new standard Android zoom gesture...double tap and drag EVERYWHERE!

  • MrLockOut

    Remember clicking traffic then alternate routes while sitting in traffic ? Anyone figure out how to do the same on the new UI?

    • James_C_L

      Literally the only thing keeps no me from upgrading from 6.14. Why the hell would they remove that? To back out 5 times just to get a reroute is absolutely retarded

      • MrLockOut

        I can almost live with backing out once, but the routes are not updated which makes this useless...

    • Freak4Dell

      Does it not automatically reroute you based on traffic? I sit in traffic a lot less these days because it will tell me to take another exit or something to get out of the current traffic or avoid the upcoming traffic. No need to do it manually that I can see.

  • Frankthetank

    What is the kb in and out overlay under the notifications bar? Where can I get something like that?

    • Brendan

      That looks like something that would be in the developer settings.

    • http://www.androidpolice.com/ Artem Russakovskii

      Network Monitor Mini.

  • mgfjd12

    I am surprised android police has not written an article how the new google maps place search sucks compared to the old apk. http://productforums.google.com/forum/#!topic/maps/GqGuGPY9Xfc101-125-false
    I used to depend on google maps for almost everything but now I just use the app when I need quick driving directions for places I used yelp or something else.

    The app used to tell me on list mode which direction and distance places were, so when I was driving I knew the upcoming restaurants. The new nearby just sucks.

  • Pix Smith

    Sad that the simplicity of a plus and minus button doesn't seem to be around.

  • andy_o

    Gmail 4.6.1 on the N5 is also capable of this gesture, while on my N4 and N10 Gmail 4.6 doesn't have the one-finger zoom gesture at all. Both Gmail and maps were finally updated to be consistent with Chrome which inexplicably switched to down-to-zoom-in a while ago.

    • The_Chlero

      I think Google is playing dirty here with its Nexus 5...hmmmmmm

  • James_C_L

    For God's sake... Please put the reroute option back in... Best feature ever. Still on 6.14 as well.

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  • Thomas’

    Did they improve the performance? Scrolling in the new maps app is just too laggy on a Nexus 4.

  • Fj0mpen

    I still haven't understood why it needs the "access contacts" permission..

    • tlingitsoldier

      Because it allows you to find a contact's address by searching for their name.

      • //

        It was possible before this permission was added...

  • http://www.androidpolice.com/ Artem Russakovskii

    So Google just updated the changelog with:
    What's New
    - Skim through transit directions to see upcoming steps and transfers in your route
    - Add your Home and Work location for at-a-glance commute information before you leave
    - Bug fixes

    Except, we could already do that in previous versions. Wat? Who's in charge of writing these things?

  • Len

    I am still on 6.14.4 since the new ones took away the ability to open navigation and run it in "follow me" mode (I.e. no destination set). Have they added that back in yet?

  • whispy_snippet

    Finally the gestures are consistent with Chrome! This was SO stupid.

  • giri1in

    Not Working on Xperia Z....

  • hozalot

    Makes very little sense to have it zoom out when dragging up. If ur facing the ground like an airplane, in and forward go together. To go closer, you "fly" toward it with the top of ur head, like superman. Don't understand why they'd switch this

  • amneel

    Search on the way, show me results that are en route! Bring back this feature, please.
    Offline, turn by turn, picture by picture directions - that was a great feature as well.