Speed limits get the green light on Google Maps

Image credit: Google (Image credit: Image Credit: Anthony Spadafora)

Updated: it looks like the speed limits feature is now appearing more widely across Google Maps for all Android and iOS users, in countries including the US and the UK. Our original story is below.

Google has begun rolling out speed limits for Google Maps throughout the US. The company began testing the feature in 2017, but it was restricted just two areas: the California Bay Area and Rio de Janeiro in Brazil.

Now, Android Police has received tips from Maps users scattered throughout the US (including Los Angeles, New York City and Minnesota) who have begun seeing speed limits as a small tile on the bottom left of the map.

As Android Police notes, the app itself hasn't received an update recently, so the change has happened on Google's servers. Therefore, although all the reports so far have been from Android users, iPhone owners are likely to start seeing speed warnings as well.

In the slow lane

It's a surprise it's taken so long for Google to add speed limits to Maps, considering it already has the data, and brought the feature to Waze in 2016. 

The new addition will make Maps a more realistic competitor to navigation apps and standalone GPS systems from the likes of Garmin and TomTom.

If you find you still don't have access to speed notifications next time you buckle up and plan a route, there are alternatives available. Velociraptor is a good choice in the US; it offers a free service that uses data from OpenStreetMap, and a premium tier that pulls its info from TomTom.

Cat Ellis

Cat is the editor of TechRadar's sister site Advnture. She’s a UK Athletics qualified run leader, and in her spare time enjoys nothing more than lacing up her shoes and hitting the roads and trails (the muddier, the better)