The Apple Maps app did have a very rocky start, with numerous examples of “fails” still floating around the Web. Still, plenty has changed in the meantime, and Apple Maps is one of the most polished app of its kind now. On top of that, it evolves every year, with iOS 14 bringing cycling directions, routes with EV stops, comprehensive city guides, and more. Still, that won’t stop us from taking a look at the best Apple Maps alternatives in 2021 to see what else is out there.
There’s str many iOS mapping and navigation apps that offer niche features and different styles of user interfaces. Consider one of the following when planning your next trip, whether it’s your daily commute or that long-awaited vacation.
1. Google Maps
It may seem strange that we’ve placed Google Maps at the top of this list – but there’s no way to ignore the world’s most popular Apple Maps alternative. Google Maps was the first hugely popular app of its kind, and many would say that Apple created its Maps app to help iOS and macOS avoid relying on Google services.
Google Maps covers more than 220 countries with an incredibly high level of detail. You can dive into nicely-designed maps, satellite imagery, check live traffic, check public transportation schedules, and more. Therefore, when it comes to navigating unknown areas, Google Maps is the app to use.
We should also mention that Google Maps is much more than a map app. You can use it to check any business, contact the businesses, make reservations, and more. You’ll also find plenty of helpful local guides, created by Google Maps contributors. And yes, you can use the app offline as well.
Waze has one of the most extensive user bases of any mapping app. This means there are plenty of people on the road to help report hazards, police, traffic, and more. This is how Waze bring always-up-to-date information, which is the app’s biggest perk.
With Waze, you can plan your next drive before you hit the road and even get a look at anticipated traffic conditions. When you get started with your drive, Waze is constantly looking to shorten your ETA, and it will dynamically change your route to do so.
You can also share your drive with friends and family when you get started so that they can view your drive and ETA live. Multiple voices for turn-by-turn directions are available for download. Also, day and night view change automatically based on the sun’s position in the sky to make map-viewing easier on the eyes.
3. HERE WeGo
For the best offline map app, HERE WeGo is the one to use. One of its flagship features is the ability to download offline maps of cities and entire countries (with over 100 countries on that list). HERE WeGo is a successor to Nokia Maps, which will surely awaken sentimental feelings in those who used Nokia phones.
Unlike other Apple Maps alternatives, HERE WeGo tries to keep things very simple. It comes with a very polished interface without any unnecessary distractions. You can use the app to view detailed apps across any country, and there are different types of visual overlays. Also, this app brings turn-by-turn voice guidance as well as any other feature you may expect from a map app.
Lastly, we would like to highlight this app’s features related to public transportation. At any moment, HERE WeGo will help you decide which route to take as well as plan your time around public transportation schedules. In select cities, you can also take a taxi or book a future ride (while comparing upfront costs as well).
MapQuest’s recently updated user interface features a clean, minimalistic design. You can check out directions in different forms at a glance and even book hotels within the app. Additionally, you can check out local restaurant menus too.
If you experience a problem with your car, MapQuest lets you request roadside assistance directly within the app. If you’re looking for gas, you can compare pricing along your route. Those features make MapQuest a great choice for added peace of mind. The app even offers live cameras, which is an amazing tool when planning your ride.
However, with all of these positive notes, there are a few downfalls. MapQuest is best used in the U.S. and Canada. You can use its maps across other countries, but you’ll be missing out on many of the core features of the app. Those outside the U.S. and Canada would find the others apps on this list more useful, as they’ll find more options.
MAPS.ME allows you to plan your trip and download your anticipated route before setting out. That means it will be reliant on your iPhone’s GPS but not LTE. That makes it the perfect mapping option if you are traveling out of your carrier’s supported range or if you’re on a limited data plan.
Know that MAPS.ME looks to cater to worldwide travelers primarily. The app has partnered with a number of travel content creators, resulting in ready-made travel guides. This could be an amazing way to find something unique. And yes – you can also book hotels right from the app itself, via Booking.com.
Even if you don’t plan on traveling, MAPS.ME can be of great help. The app comes with up-to-date maps, provides points of interest, lets you check local businesses, find ATMs, and more.
Along with our selections of the best Apple Maps alternatives in 2021, we have a useful resource for you. Check out these useful Apple Maps features – which may be just enough to persuade you to give Apple Maps another go.
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