"Don't you just love Apple Maps? It's so much better than Google Maps," says no one, ever.
Six years ago, Apple launched its own mapping service, Apple Maps, replacing Google Maps as the default mapping service on its devices. It immediately received tonnes of criticism due to its incorrect directions and more. Although it's since improved over the years, many Apple device owners still use Google Maps as their preferred mapping service. But Apple is still set on changing their habits.
The company plans to introduce entirely overhauled mapping data in the US over the next year, with data that Apple collected itself, according to TechCrunch. It will begin to roll out in the coming weeks for people who are enrolled in the iOS 12 beta and are in San Francisco or the Bay Area. The pilot will eventually expand to cover all of Northern California by autumn, followed by all versions of iOS.
Apple services leader Eddy Cue told TechCrunch that all of the US will receive the new maps “section by section” over the next year. He said Apple has “done a huge investment in getting the map up to par," and that Apple will ditch all third-party mapping data going forward. Apple is using data from its sensor-equipped vans and iPhone users who provide bits of anonymised data when they open Apple Maps.
Apple is directly competing with Google, which uses similar data-gathering techniques to provide updated information on roads and traffic. Apple's plan has been in the works for four years, apparently, and as part of the effort, it will also work on the design of its Apple Maps app, adding more green to parks and woods, more details to waterways, and clearer differences between streets and throughways.
We hope to have a play with the new Apple Maps experience soon and will report back whether it's actually worth eschewing Google Maps.