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iOS 6: New Maps with traffic & turn-by-turn navigation

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By Jesse Hollington

Social Media & Software Editor, iLounge
Published: Monday, June 11, 2012
News Categories: Apple, iPad, iPhone, iPod

During today’s WWDC 2012 Keynote, Apple took the wraps off a new Maps app and service integrated with iOS 6 and completely rebuilt by Apple from the ground up. Described as a “world-wide effort” the new Maps service includes Apple’s own local search with over 100 million business listings already included providing local business information and direct integration with third-party services such as Yelp. Maps are presented as vector graphics with a transition to a 3D representation when zooming in more closely. A fly-over is also available allowing users to view a three-dimensional satellite view presentation of buildings and landmarks.

The new Maps app also builds in turn-by-turn navigation with a visual 3D presentation and Siri integration for features such getting directions, receiving ETA updates and finding points of interest en route. Apple has also announced the integration of its own traffic service based on “anonymous, realtime” information crowd-sourced from iOS users, providing a graphic representation of busy traffic areas and integration into its new built-in turn-by-turn navigation, with real-time ETA updates and prompts for re-routing based on heavy traffic.

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Comments

1

As great as this feature may be…it makes me feel a little sad at the fact that I will soon have a $100 app that is essentially unneeded.

Being from the far-flung reaches of the Pacific (New Zealand) it will be very interesting to see if this works outside of the continental United States and Europe…

Posted by Handsome Dan on June 11, 2012 at 9:26 PM (PDT)

2

While the built-in Maps will provide basic turn-by-turn navigation, I suspect that other third-party apps will continue to differentiate themselves by providing additional features that go above and beyond simple navigation.  This is already the case with many of them, providing features such as speed limit warnings and camera locations, parking assistance and weather forecasts.  Whether these features would be enough to justify a $50-$100 purchase of a separate app is definitely questionable, but they should serve to make those who already own a separate navigation app at least feel that they’re still getting something extra for their money.

As for accuracy, it would seem that Apple has entered into a partnership with TomTom for at least some mapping data.  While it’s not clear exactly what Apple is licensing from TomTom, there’s a pretty good chance this is where navigation data will be coming from. 

Posted by Jesse Hollington in Toronto on June 12, 2012 at 11:59 AM (PDT)

3

Its a shame that Maps won’t work on ” older iPhones “. I had a iPhone 4 for just over a year, so are Apple forcing me to buy a 4s? I already have a couple of satnav apps on my phone and they do just fine. Let’s hope that when I upgrade to ios6 Google maps doesn’t disappear from the home screen because I use Google Street View all the time for work.

Posted by John Grove on June 13, 2012 at 5:53 AM (PDT)

4

Actually, the Maps app itself will work on all iPhones that support iOS 6, which includes the iPHone 4 and iPhone 3GS.  It’s only specific features such as turn-by-turn navigation and flyover that require the iPhone 4S.

iPhone 4 users can of course continue to use third-party satellite navigation apps, as you suggest.

The loss of Google Street View is unfortunate, but it should still work through the Google Maps web app in Safari, and it wouldn’t surprise me if Google releases its own iOS app at some point after iOS 6 is released.

Posted by Jesse Hollington in Toronto on June 14, 2012 at 12:23 PM (PDT)

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