First Look: Google Maps for Mobile with My Location

It doesn't install GPS, but the new Google Maps for Mobile is close enough. And it works on nearly every phone. Make its acquaintance in this First Look video.

Typing your starting point on a typical cell phone search tool can get tedious, even if you've got a high-end device with a QWERTY keyboard. A GPS-enabled cell phone can wipe those tears away, but since about 85 percent of handsets do not have GPS, most users are out of luck.

Google Maps for Mobile with My Location draws enough information from local cell phone towers to figure out where you are and then uses that information to launch a search. The idea is it saves you search time and manual effort. How well does it work? Get a glimpse in the First Look video .

You should note before downloading that Google Maps for Mobile sends anonymous radio information back to Google. If you don't want to become lab research, you may disable the entire feature from the Help menu. However, you would miss out on the most significant new keypad shortcuts.

About Jessica Dolcourt

Jessica Dolcourt reviews smartphones and cell phones, covers handset news, and pens the monthly column Smartphones Unlocked. A senior editor, she started at CNET in 2006 and spent four years reviewing mobile and desktop software before taking on devices.