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Google introduces lane guidance for Indian roads, and navigation in Hindi

Google has introduced a new lane guidance feature on Google Maps for Android and iOS users in India. The Google Maps app will now provide voice-guided instructions, signalling the lane users should stay in, or move to, in navigation mode.

The lane guidance system will be available for major roads in 20 cities including Ahmedabad, Bhopal, Chandigarh, Chennai, Bangalore, Pune, Coimbatore, Delhi, Indore, Hyderabad, Jaipur, Lucknow, Kolkata, Nagpur, Surat, Mumbai, Vadodara, Mysore, Visakhapatnam and Thiruvananthapuram. The system will also cover the major express highways across the country like the one between Pune and Mumbai.

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Additionally, Google has also introduced turn-by-turn navigation and voice guided instructions in Hindi, which can be set as the preferred language within the “Language and input” menu. Interestingly, there is now also an English (India) option, that will provide voice-guided instructions in Indian English accent. Note that Google had previously launched Google Maps in Hindi on Android and desktop in July last year.

Google support for Indic languages:

In June last year, Google Translate released an updated version of its Android app to bring in voice input support for eight Indian languages including Bengali, Gujarati, Hindi, Kannada, Marathi, Punjabi, Tamil and Telugu. Subsequently, Translate added support for Malayalam as a part of its update along with nine other languages including Sinhala, Sudanese, Myanmar, Kazakh, Tajik, Uzbek, Chichewa, Sesotho and Malagasy last month.

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The company had also introduced handwriting input mode for five Indian languages – Gujarati, Kannada, Punjabi, Tamil and Telugu on the web and its Android app in March. This was a month after adding handwriting support for Gujarati, Marathi, Punjabi and Telugu on its Google Translate iOS app. The company also added Kannada and Tamil handwriting support to its iOS app a month later.

Earlier in December 2013, Translate had added support for Punjabi translations, after having added support for Marathi translations on the web and Android platforms in May, and for iOS in September the same year.

The company had also introduced Hindi handwriting support for Google Translate & Google Search in August 2013 and Gmail & Google Drive in October 2013. It had released offline language packages to Google Translate’s Android app with support for fifty languages including Hindi in March 2013.

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