I think everyone agrees that the latest version of Google Maps for Android is an improvement over the previous versions. The interface has been streamlined and new features have been added. Unfortunately, as Google has been prone to do lately, it has also done some house cleaning. The changes to offline maps was discussed in an earlier article at this link. Some features were removed altogether.
…Bye Bye Terrain and Measure
Two layers have been removed, the terrain and Wikipedia views. Also missing is Google Labs where the company placed some new features it was still testing like Measure, Bigger Text, Directions and Intersection Explorer. I only used two of the six features Google decided to remove, and I guess that might explain their removal. Most people probably did not use these features. The two I did use, Terrain and Measure I will miss sorely.
Unless you are fond of recreational hiking or climbing, I doubt you will miss the Terrain. The terrain view would show you the contour of an area of the map with elevation information displayed as height over sea level. Measure, was a nifty feature which I think many people would appreciate. But hidden away in labs, I suspect many users never knew it was even there. Measure would allow you to measure the distance between two or more points. Measure would also display how high you would ascend going from one point to the other, or cumulative ascent in the case of multiple points. You can still access the Terrain View from Google Maps online. Sadly, I have not found an equivalent alternative to Measure in either the online Google Maps or Google Earth.
Okay, Google Maps is the best mapping application around, and I like the new cleaner looking app. Still, I wanted to take this moment to lament the loss of Terrain View and Measure, which are now consigned to the Google project graveyard.
If you feel the same way, post your thoughts below. Who knows, Google might just be listening.