iOS 8 Maps makes it easier to jump to Google and other navigation apps

applemapsiOS8

Apple Maps crashed and burned coming off the runway in iOS 6, but new additions in iOS 8 beta 3 show Apple’s had a change of heart, and is even making it easier for Apple Maps users to jump to Google Maps and other services thanks to some new UI tweaks.

Starting in iOS 8, users will be able to run a search for locations in Apple Maps and use either Apple’s own driving and walking directions, or switch directly to another app already installed on your device via a simplified menu. 

ios8appmapsThe small UI change gives users quicker access to use transit directions and other services that were rumored for iOS 8’s Apple Maps, but failed to make an appearance at WWDC.

Apple acquired the popular free transit app Embark last fall, with reports suggesting the small company’s expertise and technology in transit mapping data would be directly integrated into Apple Maps. Those features might not make it in time for iOS 8’s release this fall, but it looks like Apple’s decided the next best thing is to just make it easier for customers to use what they want.

Along with the direct link to other maps apps, Apple has beefed up Maps by updating location data every single day, as well as adding Flyover City Tours that zoom users to popular landmarks of the world’s biggest cities. The Apple Maps service also recently expanded to the iCloud.com beta, purging Google Maps from Apple’s web experience too.

  • youngjm

    I am missing something here as this is not new. For awhile now, you can put in a destination>select transit> and you are presented with App options including Google Maps, TomTom or others….. What I am seeing is not a new feature but a simplified UI that makes this option more visible to the average user.

    • http://christianoliff.com/ christianoliff ☺

      It’s much more prominent now and not hidden behind the ‘bus’ icon.

  • youngjm

    For the sake of others seeing this article I thought I would post some other articles including Apple own support article that shows this is NOT a new feature but a UI change.

    Here is an article from Apples own support site: http://support.apple.com/kb/HT5429?viewlocale=en_US&locale=en_US Take note of the section labeled transit.

    You can even ask Siri for directions and bring up the transit directions as outlined here: http://lifehacker.com/5969192/ask-siri-for-directions-via-transit-to-use-google-maps-instead-of-apple-maps

    And here is an article that references a Cult of Mac article on how to use Transit via Siri: http://bgr.com/2012/12/17/google-maps-siri-trick-how-to-255870/

  • The Gnome

    Mine does this now in iOS 7

  • Brian Emershaw

    This has been there since launch. You used to tell Siri “Transit directions to…” or “Take me home via transit” and it would pull up this menu.

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Buster HeinBuster Hein is Cult of Mac's Senior News Editor and lives in Phoenix, Arizona. Twitter: @bst3r.

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