Update, March 10: Waze 4.0 is now finally available in the Play Store. Along with the UI refresh mentioned below, the update brings significantly reduced battery consumption, according to the change log.
Original post, March 1: Waze, the Google owned community navigation app, has hit version 4.0 today, after a little time in alpha testing. Rather than a big announcement post, Waze has uploaded a video straight to YouTube to tell us what’s new. Basically, we are looking at a complete refresh to the user interface, along with a number of new features.
Starting with the new look, Android is now on the same interface as the one that rolled out to the iOS app last October. There’s now a much cleaner look all around, with far less on-screen clutter and a fairly heavy reliance on animations and bright colourful buttons to aid with navigation. Speaking of which, there’s now a panel on the left that provides quicker access to pre-set destinations and the app can also share ETAs with a pre-set contact through the simple click of a button.
Other tweaks include an improved alert system for upcoming event, such as heavy traffic and accidents. It is also now easier to report nearby incidents from the little icon in the bottom right of the navigation screen. Waze says that the update has been designed to provide “a stronger focus on the driver and the social driving experience.”
Waze hasn’t announced exactly when the update will begin rolling out, but I can only imagine that it will be quite soon. If you have been meaning to give Waze a whirl, this new update seems like a prime opportunity. Click the button below to head on over to the Play Store.