A free GPS app
Google Maps is a free application you can use to find your way home, learn details about locations or stores, and calculate distances before travelling. It’s especially useful if you want to discover eateries, shopping malls, gas stations, and more in your area. This app is great if you need directions to a specific place.
Navigate and discover the world
Maps is a free program built for navigation and obtaining information. The Google servers and people who use the application provide info so that the application can function properly. It’s easy to jump in and search for your favorite places anywhere in the world. You can also take a quick peek and observe different cities with satellite and road-based images.
Maps has direct competition from Waze. This is another application you can use to navigate the world with driving directions. While there are many GPS apps available, these two are the most dependable and consistent. These have a similar approach, but Waze has a more simplistic style. It’s worth noting that they’re both Google software.
This app does a lot more than just point you in the right direction, though. It has a wide variety of extra features that make it a must-have. These include reviews, personalized location suggestions, route options, bus stop information, group planning add-ons, and more. You’ll find yourself using these bells and whistles more than Maps’ main purpose at times.
Choosing the best route
It’s easy to follow Google Maps’ directions, especially when you get to pick your favorite route. It has a few options you can select with different priorities. If you’re low on gas, it can single out the best option for saving gas. If you’re running a bit late, you can ask for the fastest route available or minimize the number of stop signs and traffic lights on the way.
If you’re on foot or need to take a bus, you can alternate between them to more accurately calculate your estimated time of arrival. When you swap between these, the interface changes accordingly. In fact, if you’re walking it’ll buzz twice when you need to turn and once after every block; there’s no need to hold your phone out as you roam the streets.
The Maps public transport feature is also fantastic. You can see the times for each stop. If you input a destination that requires more than one bus, it’ll tell you how many you need to take and where each bus stop is. If any vehicle is running late, a nifty notification will pop up.
A smooth interface
It’s easy to move around Maps’ different menu systems and options. You can access tons of settings and tweaks with a slide of your finger to the right. Otherwise, a majority of the screen is a map of the area you’re interested in. You can swap between satellite and roads for a different visual feel; this comes down to personal preference, though.
The app responds to the day and night cycle. It switches to a dark theme or white to reflect the local time. While you can’t customize your icon on the map, you can modify different areas near you. For example, if you love a specific bakery, you can mark it with a tag of varied colors.
Google Earth has a very similar approach to the general interface. In both apps, you can drop down to surface level with the and explore different areas in 360 degrees. Maps’ Street view has images that are high quality and make it easy to find a specific store you’re trying to find. Google Earth lacks the navigation options, though.
Reviews by you
Maps has a huge database of information to draw from. Millions of stores, restaurants, shopping malls, hospitals, and more, flood the app whenever you use it. If you’re interested in general thoughts on a specific location, you can look it up and see what people have to say. What’s more, you can leave your own opinion for the world to hear.
This feedback system is generated by the user base and has no censorship other than for profanity and hate speech. For this reason, Maps is the best option when you need honest opinions on different places and services.
The app also has a point system. When you jot down notes on an experience you have, you get a few points. You accumulate these with picture uploads and whenever you answer specific questions. Overall, the Google review feature is easy to use and useful for finding sincere feedback.
Categories to explore
Maps has a list of topics you can sift through. Each of these is a group of similar services or locations that you might need. These include coffee, restaurants, groceries, attractions, gas stations, and more.
The category feature is even more useful if you’re travelling. If you need something on the spot, you can open the app and quickly tap your way to what you’re looking for.
A must-have app for travel
All in all, Google Maps has everything you need for moving around the city or heading off on a long road trip. It’s easy to use, fast, has a clean interface and works like a charm. Watch out for battery usage, however, because this application drains power quite quickly. With this app in your pocket, you can go anywhere.
In the latest patch you can share your location. You can set this to last for 24 hours or until you turn it off. You can also let other drivers and travellers know if there are speed cameras, police, or roadblocks in the city. They’ve also added a tracking system so you can see how many hours you walk or drive every day. If you're looking for alternative apps for Google Maps, you may consider Open Signal Maps, Maps.me or Citymapper.