Google Maps for Android Silently Gets a Little Change That Makes So Much Sense

The updated search box in Google Maps for Android 1 photo
Photo: 9to5Google
The most recent version of Google Maps has introduced a small change for the search box on Android, as the Mountain View-based search giant has found another way to encourage people to get the vaccine.
As you probably know if you’ve been keeping your eyes on what Google has been doing lately, the company used several of its products, including Search and Maps, as a way to provide users with essential information during these crazy times.

So Google Maps, for example, has been updated not only with information on the confirmed number of cases for every region on the map but also with additional tools to help us stay safe, including busyness data for public places and details on nearby health organizations.

And now Google is updating Google Maps with another feature in this regard, as the company has found one more way to encourage people to get the vaccine and defeat this invisible enemy once and for all.

The latest version of Google Maps now comes with a new placeholder text in the search box, as Google has replaced the generic “Search here” prompt with “Search COVID-19 vaccines.

In other words, the suggested query in Google Maps now encourages Google Maps users to look for places where they can get the vaccine in their region. The application then displays such information on the map and provides navigation instructions should they need directions to get there.

The feature is reportedly available on Android exclusively, and it’s not known if Google wants to bring it to iPhone users as well or not. For now, however, the Android availability also appears to be limited to certain regions, as not everybody sees this new placeholder text. For example, my Samsung Galaxy Note20 Ultra running the latest version of Google Maps still shows the standard text in the search box.
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About the author: Bogdan Popa
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Bogdan keeps an eye on how technology is taking over the car world. His long-term goals are buying an 18-wheeler because he needs more space for his kid’s toys, and convincing Google and Apple that Android Auto and CarPlay deserve at least as much attention as their phones.
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