Gestures are one of the smoothest interactions on a smartphone. Though often hidden and only discoverable inadvertently or by trial-and-error, they can save you time once you know how to use them. One of my favorite gestures so far has been the swipe to switch tabs in Chrome, but it may now be dethroned by a new swipe to switch accounts in Google Maps. Though I'll seldom use it in Maps, I'm really crossing fingers that it comes to Gmail soon.

To change accounts in Maps, all you have to do is swipe up or down on your avatar image at the top right of the app. This avatar is part of the new account picker that Google announced at I/O 2019 and rolled out to replace the old switcher in the side menu. So instead of tapping on it then picking the email address you want to use, you simply swipe and you're there. It's an efficient way to move through all the accounts saved on your device.

This same gesture is already available on Gmail on iOS, but sadly, it hasn't made its way to Android just yet. Yet Gmail is possibly the app where I switch accounts most often — several times during a single day. The swipe would be a welcome speed improvement there. Plus, I can think of at least a few other apps, beside Gmail, that would benefit from quick account switching more than Maps. The entire Drive suite, Google Search, Keep, Contacts, and the Play Store come to mind. So, Google, now that we have this gesture in our arsenal, how about we make it consistently available across all apps too?

If you want to try out the beauty and simplicity of this new swipe, you can check it out in Maps v10.23.0 beta and above (APK Mirror). We're not sure if it's a server-side change or not, but three of us have it on the beta channel. It could also be available on older releases or on the stable version of Maps.

Google Maps - Navigate & Explore
Google Maps - Navigate & Explore
  • Thanks:
  • Justin