Maps

How can I take the scenic route in Google Maps?

Google Maps logo

Episode 1493

Dave from Anaheim

Dave uses Google Maps on his phone, but it always chooses the faster routes and sometimes he wants to take the scenic route. How can he do that? Leo says that if he looks in the options, he can choose to avoid highways. That's a start. Although the desktop version of Google Maps will let users move routes with a click and drag, the mobile app doesn't support that yet.

Map Any Location with Just Three Words

A company called what3words has set out to map the world in a new way, and it's coming to Mercedes Benz owners next year. Traditional addresses can be problematic — there are repetitive street names, homes and businesses are sometimes located far from the center of their postcode, and many locations don't have a formal address at all. what3words aims to solve these issues by giving every place in the world a 3-word address that's precise, simple and unique. Since it uses words and not numbers, it tends to be easier to remember and share with others.

How can I update my GPS radar device?

Escort Passport IQ

Episode 1410

Lee from Rapid City, SD

Lee has an Escort radar detector/GPS device and he can't update the maps. Leo says that many GPS companies are getting out of the business because every smartphone has GPS and a maps app. The phone is constantly up to date, while the GPS device isn't. Escort has also joined the iPhone generation by making their own app that has crowd sourced radar data like GPS. So GPS devices are rapidly becoming obsolete. There may be a software/maps update at the Escort Radar Forums.

How can I get Google Now to open Waze instead of Google Maps?

Waze

Episode 1388

Mike from Orange, CA

If Mike goes into the app settings, he can make Waze his default navigation app. He'll also want to get rid of Google Maps, or at least disable it. He may need to go into the Google Now settings as well. If he goes into the Waze settings, he can tap on "Open supported links" and select "Open in this app."

This worked for Leo, but Mike is on a Samsung Galaxy S8, so it's conceivable that Samsung has done something to prevent him from being able to change that default.

Create Your Own Customized Google Maps

Google Maps has a feature that makes it possible to create your own customized maps that you can then share with friends or embed on a website. To do this, go to google.com/mymaps and sign in with your Google login. Then click the "Create a New Map" button. This will take you to an interface where you can add various things to the map. You can drop pins and label them, draw a line or shape, define a driving, biking, or walking route, add directions and more.

How can I make large prints of Google Maps?

Episode 1291

Ryan from South Dakota

Ryan wants to be able to get large printouts of Google Maps, around 60" by 50". He'd also like to fill in some ancient places for education purposes. He would have to become a developer to do this. There's an API that would allow him to tell Google Maps what he wants and what he wants to add.

Ryan can get more information on how to do this at developers.google.com

How can I export my Google Maps data?

Google Maps

Episode 1252

Kenny from Temple, TX

Kenny wants to know how he can export his Google Maps searches. Leo says he can go to Google.com/Dashboard to see all of the data that Google has collected on him. He can then export the Maps data, along with any other data he wants, at Google.com/Takeout. He should make sure to export it as a KML file for his GPS location history. He can also export his saved places, but he'll have to convert that, since Google puts it in a GeoJSON format.

How can I use Waze internationally without data?

Episode 1200

Jim from Atlanta, GA

Jim wants to know if he can use Waze in New Zealand. Leo says that it looks like Waze does support New Zealand. So his issue is going to be with data. Google Maps would allow him to precache map information before hand, so he could do that while at the hotel. But Waze does not have an offline mode. So he'll have to get a local SIM card in order to have data.

Why can't I hear directions through Google Maps?

Episode 1156

Mary from Orange, CA

Mary got a new Scion automobile and she can connect her phone to it, but it doesn't work right. She can't hear the turn by turn directions when she connects her Samsung Galaxy Note 4 to it. Leo says that there is a setting for it to play over the music. Doctor Mom in the chatroom says she had a similar problem and she says to start over with the Scion. Forget the pair in her Scion Bluetooth settings, and then repair it. Leo also says to look in the navigation settings in Google Maps to change the volume on the voice settings. There's also a 'mute' checkbox there.