Google demonstrates Maps on Android, shows off the compass

Though we’ve seen the Google Maps for Android compass feature or time or two since Android was announced, all of the videos we’ve seen so far have been gleaned from a projected image during a presentation, or otherwise not meant for the viewers at home.

Looking to remedy this, Google has published a blog post specifically focused on the Android Maps application, with an emphasis on Street View mode and the compass.

Key points from the text of the blog post:

  • Street View with Compass mode is like a “Virtual periscope anywhere”
  • Street View on Android is US only for now
  • Search results can be saved directly to contacts
  • The Maps application is fully integrated into e-mail, IM, and web. Street addresses and Google Maps links are automatically parsed – tapping them gives you the option to view them in the browser, in the Maps application, or any application that has been coded with a map “intent”.

The compass is definitely something Google should play up as much as they can. It’s not a mind-boggling, competition-destroying feature by any means – but it’s novel. It’s a neat trick that you can show to friends which they would understand with little to no explanation or technical background, and it’s just enough to make them go “Hey! That’s pretty cool!” For the non-techies and the brand/platform-apathetic, these little things can make the sale.