We’ve recently seen hints of Google preparing satellite-based text messages, the Pixel 9’s native Android satellite connectivity UI, and more. Now, we’re seeing hints of the company preparing to add satellite connectivity features in Google Maps. In a tip to PiunikaWeb, code sleuth AssembleDebug revealed that they spotted a few new strings hinting towards upcoming satellite-based location sharing in Google Maps beta v11.125.

These new strings indicate that users will be able to update their location in Maps every 15 minutes directly via satellite. This could be a useful and probably life-saving feature if you’re in an area with no cellular connectivity. Of course, it’ll only work with devices (like the Pixel 9) that support satellite connectivity. Here are the added strings:

<string name="CONNECT_TO_SATELLITE_EXPLAINER_DIALOG_TITLE">Connect to satellite</string>
<string name="CONNECT_TO_SATELLITE_EXPLAINER_DIALOG_BUTTON">Connect to satellite</string>
<string name="CONNECT_TO_SATELLITE_EXPLAINER_DIALOG_BODY">You can update your location once every 15 minutes, up to five times a day.</string>

As you can see, the new strings indicate that “you can update your location once every 15 minutes, up to five times a day.” Recently, we also saw a new satellite icon that’s coming with the Satellite Gateway app. This app will let users communicate with emergency services seamlessly.

Satellite Gateway app icon

So it’s clear that Google is pushing full steam ahead with its focus on satellite connectivity features ahead of the Pixel 9 launch later this year. By the looks of it, Google’s satellite connectivity features will leave Apple’s current offering in the dust. As time progresses, I presume we’ll see more hints about the feature and even a potential UI, ahead of the public release.

Dwayne Cubbins
1098 Posts

My fascination with Android phones began the moment I got my hands on one. Since then, I've been on a journey to decode the ever-evolving tech landscape, fueled by a passion for both the "how" and the "why." Since 2018, I've been crafting content that empowers users and demystifies the tech world. From in-depth how-to guides that unlock your phone's potential to breaking news based on original research, I strive to make tech accessible and engaging.

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