The Google app installed by default on most Android devices requires an internet connection to display results and accept voice commands or search queries. The app has now received an update allowing it to process voice commands while using Google Maps, even when an internet connection is not available.
The updated version of the Google app, bearing the version number 13.20, allows users to use voice commands to determine their ETA or the distance to the next turn while navigating using Google Maps. You can simply use the “Ok Google!” or “Hey Google!” wake words to activate the assistant. Then continue with a query such as “What is my ETA?” You can also issue commands like “Cancel my navigation” to stop your current ride.
This feature is a boon for regular travelers and explorers who use the navigation app while traveling in unknown regions. It lets you keep your eyes on the road and your hands on the controls so you’re not distracted or unprepared for anything that might happen on the road.
Another small change in this version of Google apps is that privacy controls have been made easier to access. You can now find them directly on the app’s home screen if you tap on your Google account/profile icon.
Additionally, the search giant has updated the Google Authenticator app for Android. First spotted by 9to5Google, this is the first update the app has received in two years. The update lets you hide your two-factor authentication (2FA) codes until you press them. The updated app with version number 5.20 hides your six-digit 2FA codes under a “click to reveal PIN” label.
Note that Google Authenticator users will still be able to copy the 2FA code when tapped. The updated version of the app is available for some users through the Google Play Store. Wider rollout of this handy app is expected through official channels. However, you can go ahead and download the APK file from a trusted third-party app store if you want to start using it right away.