Google is adding a new feature to Maps for Android that could make its navigation software even smarter. Called “Driving Mode,” the new Maps mode will take into account your history and current location to try and determine your destination. The app will then suggest info about your route like travel times and traffic conditions, according to Android Police. It appears to be similar to the algorithmic suggestions offered up in Google Now cards, yet tailored for getting around by car and even when you already know how to get there. You’ll be able to launch Driving Mode with an app icon shortcut or through Maps’ in-app sidebar.
Google Maps version 9.19, the one with Driving Mode, is in the process of being pushed to the Play Store and may not be widely available for some time. You can install the version manually, but figuring out how to activate the feature is proving difficult. Android Police managed to get it up and running on two devices without figuring out how to replicate the process on a third. While we can hope Google’s general release will fix the issue, we might be waiting until a later version to try out the fully featured Driving Mode.