For years now we have lived with Google maps. While is is a great app in itself with excellent search capabilities, the new maps from Apple is way better on several fronts.
The first thing you will notice is the beautiful skeuomorphic design of the navigation instructions. Since skeuomorphic design has become a mainstay of Apple’s apps, this may not be surprising in retrospect, but it is very satisfying all the same.
Turn by turn directions are always ready with Siri providing the voice over for the navigator. As your car moves, so does the arrow representing your car. You can see it in 2D as well as in 3D.
The most awesome part is that you can see the directions and active-moving-maps in your lock screen!
As you can see in the above photo, the map is visible with instructions on the lock screen itself. Also below you can see how the navigator is just a tap away when you are working in other areas of the phone.
Maps has taken over the status bar just like the phone app would do.
Although I have not show pictures here, the notification when a new text message comes in looks very cute as well. Whats more, the navigation works brilliantly in the landscape mode.
Unlike the old Google Maps, this one shows you your previous destinations when you are going to create a route. That is a real time saver.
But search is still better on google maps.
In keeping with Apple’s philosophy of ‘it all works well together’, if you ask Siri for a near by starbucks when you are driving, it will only show you the ones that are in front of you on your route. That is a real treat! Thank you Siri.