Top Google Maps Rival Receives Major Update With a Flood of New Features

Huawei has embarked on a very ambitious mission of building a fully featured Google Maps alternative, so its in-house rival gets massive updates regularly.
New update now live for Huawei users 6 photos
Photo: Bogdan Popa/autoevolution
Huawei Petal MapsHuawei Petal MapsHuawei Petal MapsHuawei Petal MapsHuawei Petal Maps
Petal Maps has just received another important pack of improvements, including for the navigation experience and the public transportation mode.

Now at version 3.6.0, Petal Maps already comes with the essential feature package for a navigation app. It can easily replace Google Maps on Android devices, but the Chinese tech behemoth keeps focusing on smaller refinements that are just as important as the main capabilities.

The new update aligns with this strategy and includes additional polishing on several fronts.

First and foremost, the navigation instructions receive a small tweak to make the information shown on the screen easier to read. The new Petal Maps update introduces emphasized direction symbols, so you can figure out which direction you need to go by just peeking at the screen.

Such an approach is extremely important for a driver. Reading the information shown on the screen as fast as possible reduces the time drivers spend without keeping their eyes on the road. As such, Huawei's update eventually helps tackle the driver's distraction, reducing the time you'd have to spend reading the navigation instructions.

This update also includes additional information for people using public transportation. Petal Maps now comes with a trip progress bar for buses, so you can see in real-time which stop you're at. The new details help users keep track of their progress towards the destination, as they'll know in real time where they are precisely.

Petal Maps also includes a social component, given Huawei's main purpose is to turn the application into a full Google Maps replacement. Starting with this update, Huawei offers new icons on the contributor screen, as the company wanted to make them "clearer and easier to use."

And last but not least, the new version of Petal Maps also includes a new option to add location cover images.

Petal Maps is the result of Huawei's ambition to survive in a world without Google. Back in 2019, the United States government banned Huawei from using products developed by American companies, including software and hardware. As a major Android device manufacturer, Huawei was severely hit, especially as its international push was entirely based on Google's operating system.

The company started the development of alternatives to everything built by Google, including Google Maps. Petal Maps is its big bet in navigation, especially as Huawei wants to provide users with everything they'd need pre-loaded with their phones.

The latest Petal Maps version can be found on the App Gallery, but if you have already installed the app and have automatic updates enabled, it might already be there on your device.
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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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