While I still use Apple’s own Maps app from time to time, mostly because it’s built in to iOS, I tend to prefer Google Maps more. It just feels more complete, though that’s just my own opinion; I haven’t done any scientific analysis or comparison.
That said, the Google Maps app is pretty darn great, and there’s a couple of hidden features you can access with just a swipe (and maybe a tap or two). Here they are.
Apple has been launched a full court press on Maps ever since its disappointing launch last fall. The company has already gobbled up a few mappingcompanies but it’s not ready to stop quite yet, as it just purchased the map app Embark.
Embark, Inc. focuses on building free transit apps to help navigate public transportation. According to a report from Jessica Lessin, Apple acquired the small team very recently and plans to directly integrate Embark’s tech into Apple Maps.
Google has updated its Google Maps apps for Android and iOS to add real-time incident reports from the Waze community. This means that when Waze users — or “Wazers” as they like to be called — report accidents, construction, road closures, and other delays, the alerts will be displayed inside Google Maps as well as Waze.
Today Google refreshed its promoted search results for local business in Google Maps on both Android and iOS. When you search for a business, Google will now show ads for merchants that have paid in a bottom banner. Like Google search on the web, it will be obvious that the listing is a promotion.
Got a Wi-Fi-only iPad, but want to access a location on Google Maps when you’re out and about in the car? How about looking at your map when the signal on your iPhone isn’t strong enough, or even when it’s non-existent?
Well, the latest iOS version of Google Maps has been updated, and one of the less publicized features is the ability to save locations for access offline. The Android version has had this feature for a while, but this is the first time the iOS one has gotten the ability.
The way you activate this feature is also kind of cute, so check it out.
Google Maps has been updated to 2.0 for iOS, which means that it finally has a native iPad interface. No longer will iPad users have to deal with stupidly-oversized navigation elements on the 2x pixel-doubled screen.
ForeverMap 2 is one of those great apps that should be a no-brainer download for any even moderately frequent map user. Unlike either the standard iOS Maps app or the Google Maps app, ForeverMap 2 can download and store custom maps on your device — allowing you to use the map and accompanying navigation features even without a wifi or data connection.
Today, ForeverMap 2 has been updated with behind-the-curtain improvements to make it much faster, and it now also includes guide information from Wikitravel. It can even route bicycle trips. Best of all, Skobbler has dropped the price from $3 to free till the end of the day.
Google has rolled out a major Google Maps update for Android smartphones and tablets, which is also “coming soon” to iPhone and iPad. It introduces a new design that finally boasts a dedicated user interface for tablets, as well as enhanced navigation and new features.
Google published a big update for it’s Google Earth app for iOS today. The new version includes an improved UI with a left hand panel that makes it easier to enable different layers of information.
Along with the refreshed UI, the Google Earth update adds Google Maps Street View to the service so you can explore the world in 3D flyover or at street level. Improved directions and search were also added to the list of new features.