Immediately following the release of Google+ Sign-In, a new service which competes with Facebook Connect, Google has announced the launch of Google Play Services v3.0, which adds Google+ Sign-In features and improvements to the Google Maps API for Android.
As a primer, Google Play Services is a platform which allows Android developers to integrate their apps with Google products. Now, Google touts, users will be able to “sign in to your Android app with their existing Google credentials, and bring along their Google+ info for an upgraded experience.”
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These basic authentication features aren’t distinct from the offerings of Twitter or Facebook, but Google is also now offering over-the-air installs from your site; app customization, which lets apps pull Google+ details; and “interactive posts,” which seems to add Facebook-like verbs to posts, such as “listen,” “RSVP,” and “check-in.”
Over-the-air installs seem particularly interesting, as they could significantly cut down on friction by removing the Google Play Store from the equation when it isn’t needed.
According to Google, this release also fixes 20+ Google Maps API bugs, including improvements to map rendering and the behavior of markers and infowindows. In addition, Google has added “native support for new map shapes such as circles, anti-clockwise polygons, and theOnMyLocationChangeListener event.”
Developers can head here to learn more.
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