Okay, who knows when we might see Android Éclair (2.0) on our HTC Hero handsets, but this bit of news has us very excited (and probably most satnav companies very frightened). Google has officially announced the Beta of Google Maps Navigation that will hit handsets running Android 2.0.
All of the core features that you’d find in any half-decent GPS device is here. There is turn-by-turn voice guidance, automatic rerouting as well as 3D views. However, Google will also tap into the phone’s internet connection to deliver even more.
This includes always using up to date maps, searching by business or landmark, search by voice (great if you’re driving!), access to live traffic data as well as satellite and street views. The first (lucky) handset to received Google Maps Navigation is the Verizon Droid that was announced today. Hopefully, us HTC Hero users aren’t too far behind! Check out a video of Google Maps Navigation in action after the break.
Update: Also check out a demonstration of Google Maps Navigation in action from VP of Engineering, Vic Gundotra after the break.