Skip to main content

Google Maps for Android testing floating bar UI for category searches

Google Maps is constantly testing out new changes for its mobile apps, and on the Android app, we’ve been seeing quite a few different adjustments as of late. Today, we’re getting a quick look at a new addition Google is testing with a special “floating” UI for some searches.

Spotted by an Android Police reader, Google seems to be testing a new UI within Google Maps which places category searches within a floating bar. The icons for things such as nearby restaurants and gas stations simply appear under the standard search bar, over top of the map without totally hiding it.

The functionality here is nothing new, as you can try out these category searches through the “explore” section of the current Maps interface.

As the tipster notes, these buttons don’t show up all the time. He says that they usually appear after he has tapped on a landmark, at which point the buttons appear and he can scroll through them.

Notably, the area in which these buttons do show up is disabled at all times for interacting with the map, so Google is clearly still in very early testing on this one. So far, other users haven’t seen this same test. Perhaps it’s a part of the new features we saw announced at I/O.

Check out 9to5Google on YouTube for more news:

FTC: We use income earning auto affiliate links. More.

You’re reading 9to5Google — experts who break news about Google and its surrounding ecosystem, day after day. Be sure to check out our homepage for all the latest news, and follow 9to5Google on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn to stay in the loop. Don’t know where to start? Check out our exclusive stories, reviews, how-tos, and subscribe to our YouTube channel



Avatar for Ben Schoon Ben Schoon

Ben is a writer and video producer for 9to5Google.

Find him on Twitter @NexusBen. Send tips to or encrypted to

Ben Schoon's favorite gear