Google Issues Nexus One Software Update

Google announced on Tuesday it has issued an over-the-air free software update for users of its new Nexus One smartphone. The update will come via the telephone network instead of having to plug it into a computer and download the software.

In addition to adding several new features, Google (NASDAQ: GOOG) said it thinks the update released today for the Nexus One will address 3G
connectivity issues
some users reported last month. “We will provide a general fix to help improve 3G connectivity on some Nexus One phones,” the company said in a blog post.

Three key features of the update include a new version of Google Maps, the addition of the Google Goggles application and pinch-to-zoom functionality, a feature found in the iPhone.

With Google Goggles, users can snap a
picture of something and have the device perform a search based on the image, so the user doesn’t have to type anything in. For example, a tourist could take a shot of a well-known landmark and get back relevant Web sites with more information on it.

The latest Google Maps 3.4 synchronizes starred items or favorite places from your phone or computer for easy access. The app now also includes search suggestions from a user’s personal maps history if they’ve already been using Google Maps. Version 3.4 also includes “Night mode” navigation, automatically changing the screen color and brightness for easier viewing when driving at night.

The update is being rolled out now and Nexus One users will receive a message notifying them of its availability. Google said the update is being rolled out gradually to avoid congestion, so some users might not get the notification until the end of this week.

David Needle is the West Coast bureau chief at, the news service of, the network for technology professionals.

News Around the Web