Apple has completed a major revamp of what was perhaps the worst part of its mobile suite of software, Apple Maps, with the navigation app serving as a viable alternative to Google Maps.
The redesigned Apple Maps is available for iPhone, iPad, Mac, and Apple Watch with detailed pedestrian data, precise addresses, and better mapping coverage. Apple had subsequently released its fleet of tech-loaded cars that collected data for the Apple Maps improvement by roaming across the world.
While the data are what powers the latest features like "Look Around" which allow the Maps users to virtually travel the streets right on their iPhone, and supposedly Apple's version of Street View.
What are the New Features in Apple Maps?
Besides the "Look Around" feature, another highlight of Apple Maps is the "Flyover" feature that shows photo-realistic 3D imagery of the currently covered 350 cities.
The revamped navigation system builds on several of the existing features, with some new ones such as access to real-time transit information, sharing of trip ETA with friends, flight status, and indoor maps, among others. Albeit, many of the new features in Apple Maps are already available on Google Maps, so doesn't make any new innovations.
However, the company is promising a more secure and privacy USP for Apple Maps, like the Apple Card, which works with Apple Pay or with the laser‑etched titanium card, as Apple Card lives on the iPhone.
How to update Apple Maps on Your iPhone
Apple doesn't require users to sign-in to use Apple Maps, which is only possible for the web version of Google Maps. And the data collected is de-identified, with location information that is stored on Apple server obfuscated using the fuzzing process. So, that is probably a vantage point for Apple Maps users who want more privacy from tracking.
The updated Apple Maps is now live for US users, and in the coming months, will be landing in Europe. If you tap the "Updates" button at the bottom right of the App Store, with "Apple Maps" listed, then it means the new version is available for your region. If it is not listed, then you have to wait for the latest version.