Google Maps for iOS gains quick access tabs with info on nearby locations, traffic, and transit

Google Maps iOS explore tab

Apple Maps has definitely improved in the years since its launch, but many iOS users still rely on Google Maps to help them get around. Today Google announced a new feature for those folks.

Google is now rolling out a new section in Google Maps for iOS that’ll help you get more info about what’s around you. Swipe up from the bottom of the app and you’ll see three tabs — the explore tab, the driving tab, and the transit tab — that’ll help you do things like find a meal nearby or catch a bus.

This feature rolled out on Google Maps for Android last year, and it’s good to see it coming to iOS as well. With it, you can quickly find info about what’s around you, including restaurants and traffic, without having to tap on a bunch of places or change to a different part of Google Maps.

If you use Google Maps for iOS, keep an eye out for this feature the next time you load up the app.

Google Maps iOS traffic, transit tabs

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Google Maps for iOS adds easy access to traffic and transit info

Over a year ago, Google updated its Maps app for Android, making it easier for users to search for restaurants, check out nearby traffic and find public transit schedules. Today, that update is now available for iOS users. With the update, Google Map…
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Google Phone v17 adds floating “chat heads” for quick access to in-call functions, prepares RTT support [APK Teardown]

Cash For Apps: Make money with android app

There’s a new update to the Google Phone app rolling out to Google-supported devices, and this one brings a long-awaited feature: Chat heads. More specifically, this is the floating widget with the contact photo of the person you’re talking to. Also coming in the future, or possibly already live for some, is support for the new Real-Time Text protocol.

What’s New

Unofficial Changelog: (the stuff we found)

  • Floating chat heads during calls

Floating bubble for in-call functions

Google has been experimenting for months while with adding a floating widget to its Phone app, similar to that of the chathead feature made popular by Facebook Messenger.

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Google Phone v17 adds floating “chat heads” for quick access to in-call functions, prepares RTT support [APK Teardown] was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

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How to limit HomePod access so family and friends can’t send texts, create reminders, or hijack your music

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There are two different ways to lock your HomePod from outside access — restricting access to AirPlay only, disabling messages, reminders and notes. AppleInsider shows you how to access and control both of these.
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Bill Gates to Apple: Help investigators access phones or risk regulation


Bill Gates rarely shied away from confronting Apple when he was Microsoft’s CEO, and new comments to Axios today suggest that he has a new issue with Cupertino: unbreakable encryption. Without mentioning Apple’s name, Gates raised the prospect that the company might be on the wrong side of the encryption debate, specifically when it comes to investigating criminals, and could face government regulation if it doesn’t cooperate with investigations.

Offered during a discussion of “big trends” that scare the technologist-turned-philanthropist, Gates’ premise is somewhat nuanced: Even if technology companies are moving society forward, they shouldn’t impede traditional governmental functions. “The companies need to be careful,” said Gates, “that they’re not … advocating things that would prevent government from being able to, under appropriate review, perform the type of functions that we’ve come to count on.”

One example? Taking a “view that even a clear mass-murdering criminal’s communication should never be available to the government.” When asked whether he was referring to Apple being able to unlock an iPhone, Gates said, “There’s no question of ability; it’s the question of willingness.” Some might read that as requiring a universal iOS backdoor that government actors could open with a court order, but offering case-by-case assistance to investigators could have the same effect.

Apple has described itself as unable to decrypt content stored on iOS devices and unwilling “to add a backdoor into any of our products.” Even facing FBI demands for assistance unlocking the iPhone of a gunman in San Bernardino, California, CEO Tim Cook refused to budge, touting Apple’s commitment to user privacy as more important. More recently, however, Apple has apparently offered to help the FBI in ways that don’t compromise its encryption system as a whole.

In the interview, Gates appears to be concerned about technology’s empowerment of “a small group of people to cause damage,” including anything from nuclear to bioterror to cyber weapons, which could affect billions of people. To that end, he also questioned tech companies’ “enthusiasm about making financial transactions anonymous and invisible,” presumably allowing money to flow to dark places without consequence.

While Gates may appear to be focusing heavily on Apple, he’s correct in noting that the U.S. government has historically had the ability to trace transactions and examine individuals’ communications during investigations. These data points have been the foundations of numerous criminal prosecutions, and if a company tries to impede reasonable investigations, it may actually be overstepping historic privacy rights. “The tech companies have to be … careful that they’re not trying to think their view is more important than the government’s view,” said Gates, “or than the government being able to function in some key areas.”

Gates is currently a full-time philanthropist, heading up the charitable Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation with his wife. Under his watch, Microsoft developed a monopoly on PC operating systems, eventually losing a historic antitrust case that forced the company to assist third-party competitors and limit its web browser development.

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