Google Maps shared location pin gets a more polished look

What do you want to know

  • Google Maps has quietly rolled out a new look for its shared location pin.
  • The icon now removes the white border around your contact’s avatar for a cleaner design.
  • It seems to be gradually coming to users via a server-side update.

Google Maps users who frequently use the app to track the shared location of their family members will soon notice a neat new icon update for the feature. This is due to a minor change made by Google to the shared location pin of the navigation app.

Spotted by Android Police (opens in a new tab), the Maps shared location icon now has a more polished look that matches the rest of the app’s design. The pin icon now displays your contact’s profile picture without a white border, which is a slight change from its previous appearance.

Because the white border is gone, your contact’s avatar is much easier to see without squinting. It improves the visibility of the sharing party’s profile picture and makes the feature more consistent with the overall aesthetic of Maps.

The ability to share your location in Maps is one of its most useful features, so it makes sense that Google would pay some attention to that as well. That said, the latest design change is a bit odd in that the white border reappears when you tap on a contact’s name.

This is just the latest tweak Google has introduced to Maps in recent memory. Since June, the search giant has pushed a series of updates to the app, including the ability to display the Air Quality Index (AQI) based on data from the Protection Agency environment and PurpleAir. Maps have also recently started showing toll price estimates for nearly 2,000 toll roads in select countries. More recently, it was discovered that the latest beta version of Maps includes new features that will show an energy-efficient route for electric and hybrid cars.

However, the new update does not bring significant functional changes. And like what Google does with features like this, the new look seems to be rolling out via a server-side update.

Lance B. Holton