Google Maps gets new widget stuffed with Material You on Android 12

Google has released yet another revamped widget for Android 12, now for Maps. The add-on follows the standards of the feature released months ago exclusively for iOS, with quick shortcuts to important app functions and a search bar to speed up map queries.

It was Reddit users who found the novelty first, still present exclusively in the 11.3.0 Beta version of Google Maps. Judging by the catches, the new widgets already work fine, and aren’t in a “stop-hole” state like the first Chrome add-on implementations were months ago.

The new widget for Maps has varying sizes to fit various home screen layouts (Image: Play/Mathieu_G_Gagnon)

The main screen item acts as a more versatile shortcut to the Google Maps. Altogether, it can feature up to eight buttons for quick map lookups for restaurants, gas stations, markets and hotels, for example — custom locations such as “Home” and “Work” are also included. At the top is a search bar.

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In the reduced version of the add-on, only four buttons are displayed, and it is not known if they vary according to user preference. The search bar remains, so the tool continues as a quick way to access the map and its most important features for everyday use.

The reduced add-on option has fewer buttons, but is equally versatile (Image: Play/Mathieu_G_Gagnon)

Widget com Material You

It’s an addition to Android 12, so it’s the Material You design that determines the look of the widget. Hence, the corners of the shortcut and buttons are rounded and the colors vary depending on the predominant wallpaper palette. Overall, the newness fits very well with the new operating system interface and finally puts the Android app on the same level as the iOS version.

The novelty appears to be gradually being distributed among users of the trial version of the app, but as the distribution is still limited to Android 12 users, availability is even more restricted. Nothing prevents Google from launching the add-on for more versions of the Robozinho System, but there is no forecast for this yet.

If it hasn’t appeared to you yet, it’s worth checking out the Play Store looking for updates to Google Maps. If even with downloads up to date the widget is still not available, it remains to wait until the release of Google.

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