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India’s bikers finds shortcuts through Google Maps two-wheeler mode

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Although, Google’s android oreo Go OS and Files Go! storage app were the headliners at its India event, the company also had 2 more surprises in tow: a two-wheeler mode for Maps and a bi-lingual version of its Assistant for Indian feature phone JioPhone.

India overtook China to become the world’s leading bike and scooter market last year. With millions of two-wheelers in the country, it’s no wonder Google is making a dedicated update of the bikes. The new two-wheeler mode will scout shortcuts that are not accessible for trucks, and cars, and provide customized traffic and arrival time estimates. Google claims it’s an “India-first” feature, so chances are it’ll spread to other regions too.

While the Assistant will pre-install on Android Oreo Go budget smartphones, the digital helper is also heading to a feature phone. A Hindi and English language variant of Assistant is coming to the $25, 4G-enabled JioPhone. aside from slight tweaks to its interface, Assistant will retain all its voice-based functions, despite being downgraded to a bargain-basement phone. Though, it’ll have to tussle with JioPhone’s existing Assistant (HelloJio) while there.

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