The latest release of Google Maps for Android has progressed from turn-by-turn GPS-guided driving directions to stop-by-stop public transport directions, helping public transport users from Bangkok to Baltimore find the right route home.

"Transit Navigation uses GPS to determine your current location along your route and alerts you when it's time to get off or make a transfer," said Google software engineer Chris Van Der Westhuizen. "This is particularly helpful if you're in a city where you don’t speak the language and can’t read the route maps or understand the announcements."

Stop and transfer notifications will appear on screen and vibrate at the opportune moment, even if you have slipped your phone back into your pocket.

Google’s Transit Navigation directions are currently available for Android users in more than 400 cities in the US, Canada, Central America, South America, Asia, Europe, Oceania and Africa. The service is still in beta, however, so there may be a few kinks.

Nokia launched a similar, free service for its Ovi customers in New York City back in May 2011. The company plans to expand the project to include more cities in the future.

Download Google Maps 5.7 for Android here: https://market.android.com/details?id=com.google.android.apps.maps&hl=en

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