An update to Google Maps v9.54 began rolling out to users through the beta channel yesterday, but it doesn’t appear to have any visible changes going live quite yet. However, a teardown of the apk does bring a few hints about what to expect in the future. There are clues about a couple of new saved destinations like the Home and Work slots that have become so useful, the first stirring of support for Android O’s notification channels, a few new “promos” to get people interested in various features, and a very curious feature that might turn out to be a task list of sorts. As usual, we’ve got a link at the bottom to download this update to sideload if you’re not interested in waiting for Google to deliver it to your device.
Disclaimer: Teardowns are based on evidence found inside of apks (Android’s application package) and are necessarily speculative and usually based on incomplete information. It’s possible that the guesses made here are totally and completely wrong. Even when predictions are correct, there is always a chance that plans could change or may be canceled entirely. Much like rumors, nothing is certain until it’s officially announced and released.
The features discussed below are probably not live yet, or may only be live for a small percentage of users. Unless stated otherwise, don’t expect to see these features if you install the apk.
Saved locations for School and Gym
If you find yourself regularly using the Home and Work saved locations for quick navigation, you’ll enjoy this one. The Maps team is expanding the list to include two more common destinations: your gym and your school.
Since those two strings don’t really include any specific telltale signs that they’re intended to be default saved locations, I’ve included the two previously existing lines for