Feb 26th, 2013

Google has just announced version 3.0 of Google Play Services, and it brings a big feature that many of us have been waiting for. This new version will enable developers to include a Google+ sign-in option for their applications. This will allow users to sign-in and sign-up for services with their existing Google+ account credentials, much like many apps do with Twitter and Facebook. The folks at Banjo have already had their app injected with this functionality.

The fun doesn’t stop there, though. Once users sign-in to your website using Google+ you can have it so that your app is downloaded over-the-air to their associated devices without any extra steps. Apps can tap into Google+ profiles to fill out a user account with details such as name, a profile picture, and a bio. You can give users the option of displaying various types of activities and actions performed within apps, and these posts can be controlled by users to make sure they’re not flooding their timeline.

A lot more developer-centric changes have been made to the Google Maps API, including more than 20 bug fixes. Of those 20+ fixes, half of the top 10 bugs reported in the Google Maps issue tracker have been dealt with, quite an impressive rate and things will only get better from now on. There are also new features such as circles, anti-clockwise polygons, and access to the OnMyLocationChangeListener event for even deeper access to the Maps platform.

As usual, us users won’t be seeing immediate satisfaction from these changes, but once developers get their feet wet with all the new goods introduced here you’ll be taking part in much more enjoyable user experiences, especially if you embrace Google+ with open arms like so many of us already have. Developers can find more info about all of the changes over at Google’s blog.

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