Apple Maps Vs. Google Maps: Which One Is Better?

For iPhone users, Apple and Google Maps are usually the first two names that come to mind when they think about navigation apps. However, both these apps come with their own set of pros and cons. In the world of navigation apps, the Apple Maps vs. Google Maps competition has long since been a common debate scenario.

In 2012, Apple, which had been using Google Maps as the default navigation app, parted ways with Google and came up with its own navigation app—Apple Maps. Apple has worked on its navigation app and made substantial improvements to it. Let’s take a look at the features of both Apple Maps and Google Maps:

Price and availability

Both Apple Maps and Google Maps are free applications. While Apple Maps already comes preloaded on most Apple devices, such as iPhones and iPads, Android users can download Google Maps from the App store. For iOS users, Apple Maps is set as the default location service app on all its devices. Since it is a preinstalled app, Apple Maps will get updated whenever a new version of iOS is rolled out in the market. For example, when iOS 9 came into the market in 2015, the public-transportation directions feature was automatically added to the app as a part of the update. The updates continue to date with each upgrade in iOS, the latest being 13.1.1. Google Maps is easily available and is also updated periodically. This can be chosen to be the preferred app on Apple devices.

Search and directions

When comparing Apple Maps with Google Maps, the ease to navigate is an important factor to consider when choosing the right application for you. Both Google and Apple Maps provide multiple options to plan your travel route. While Apple Maps displays the approximate time you could take from your origin point to your destination by driving, using public transport, walking, or using ridesharing apps, Google Maps, along with these, can show the approximate time if you wish to cycle to your destination.

One common example is if you search for a generic query, such as “restaurants near me,” Google will present you with various matches that are usually sorted by distance. You can even use filters these results based on other criteria. If you have searched for a restaurant on Google Maps, it will also show the timings of the place in the results and whether it will be closing soon. Besides, a short description and price band, if available, a gallery of pictures, and the star rating of place is also shown on Google Maps. When you tap on the search results, you are able to see more details and the option to get the directions using various modes of transport. Users can also get some alternative routes and information on how these routes will affect the ETA.

For iOS users, a similar but more concise list of search results is provided by Apple Maps. Comparing Apple Maps versus Google Maps, as opposed to Google Maps’ star ratings, price brand, and picture gallery feature, Apple Maps provides a one-line description of the place and allows the user to browse more options on the screen at once. There is a better view of the map on the screen as well. When you tap on the search results, the location will be centered on the map view and will provide useful information about your destination such as the address, operating hours, phone number, if they allow reservations and deliveries, and some short reviews. Apple Maps also gives directions using four modes of transport. However, getting alternative routes using Apple Maps may not always be possible.


When it comes to comparing Google Maps and Apple Maps based on turn-by-turn navigation, there are certain differences that cannot be ignored. For Apple Maps, the most attractive feature for iOS users is the 3D map view. It can be easily activated by just swiping with two fingers before you start your journey. This is an extremely useful navigation feature since it allows you to see the area around in 3D and helps you understand what your exact position is on the map screen.

The navigation feature that sets Google Maps apart in the Apple versus Google Maps battle is its voice command feature. This feature lets you control the turn-by-turn navigation of the map by just tapping on the microphone, which is at the top right of the app and feeds in your command.

Unique features

While comparing Apple Maps and Google Maps based on their unique features, you can come across a lot of similarities as well as several major differences. One of the noteworthy unique features of Apple Maps includes the Flyover Tour. With the help of this feature, users can take a virtual tour of any place without having to travel there. It provides 3D visuals of the place to give you a virtual tour and even changes the view in correspondence to the movements of your phone.

For Google Maps users, there are many unique features to relish as well. One of the many remarkable unique features is Google Street View. It has been hailed as a revolutionary service provided by the navigation app as it allows users to get a street-level view of the destination of their choice.

Both these navigation apps have their pros and cons. The choice finally comes down to which app you are more comfortable using. For this, you can try out both and see which works best.

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