Google Maps now available for iPhone with everything and an SDK

Google Maps now available for iPhone with everything and an SDK
We heard it was coming and now it is finally here. Google Maps has officially launched for iOS. The app is available now in the iTunes App Store, and while it is a universal app, it is designed for the iPhone 5, meaning if you decide to install it on an iPad, it will not be optimized. Google Maps for iOS has most of the features you'd expect, and even more interesting it has launched with an SDK.

The app is everything that you’d expect from a Google Maps app. It includes the full range of places, and Street View imagery. It includes voice guided turn-by-turn navigation, vector drawn maps for faster loading and 3D modeling, live traffic info, and public transit directions. It’s a full featured Google Maps app. 

The only downsides we can see in initial testing is that it doesn't include walking or biking directions, and isn’t optimized for the iPad yet. There also is no Google Latitude or offline maps, but we really didn't expect that. Overall, the app is slick and smooth. It even has some features we'd like to see come over to Android like having the top search result show at the bottom, and swiping up on it brings up the entire search results list. Google promised an amazing Maps experience, and it came through with this app.

The real game-changer though is the inclusion of an SDK which will allow iOS developers to completely bypass Apple Maps, and hook directly into Google Maps. This is a bold move by Google. It should be interesting to see not only if developers take advantage of it, but if Apple allows it to happen.

If you're interested, Google Maps is available for free in the iTunes App Store

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46 Comments

2. Reluctant_Human

Posts: 913; Member since: Jun 28, 2012

"I once was lost but now I'm found"

19. XiphiasGladius

Posts: 813; Member since: Aug 21, 2011

Such an amazing grace. ^________^

40. Mxyzptlk unregistered

Apple Maps worked just enough. Here you all thought Apple wouldn't accept it.

3. zibbyzib2000

Posts: 221; Member since: Nov 18, 2010

Fun Fact: The app uses "Google Voice Assitants" voice for turn by turn navigation. I love Siri but when you compare the turn by turn navs on Apple Maps and Google Maps... Googles voice sounds so much more realistic and Siri sounds really robotic.

5. MichaelHeller

Posts: 2734; Member since: May 26, 2011

That same voice is part of the Google Now stuff in the iOS Google Search app too, right?

7. zibbyzib2000

Posts: 221; Member since: Nov 18, 2010

Yep. That's correct.

47. LionStone

Posts: 1048; Member since: Dec 10, 2010

Yep! That's Majel, and she sounds waay better than siri.

13. CellieCell

Posts: 151; Member since: Apr 14, 2010

wow, I'm really surprised Google allowed voice navigation on iOS. Google had a major advantage with they're devices but now with voice navigation on iOS. I don't know. I guess the reason why I'm so upset is because I don't want people to say. I have that on iOS too. because apple is known for paid premium services.

28. tedkord

Posts: 17410; Member since: Jun 17, 2009

Google never blocked voice turn by turn on iOS. Apple did, by not allowing access to the Siri APIs. Probably they wanted iOS utters to pay for an expensive gps app so they could get their 30% cut.

38. MichaelHeller

Posts: 2734; Member since: May 26, 2011

Actually, Google did block Apple from using turn by turn and vector graphics

25. Peter98

Posts: 119; Member since: Aug 01, 2012

Much details too. And hope they will release iPad version very soon too.

6. snail3

Posts: 2; Member since: Dec 12, 2012

Turn-by-turn navigation with gmap on iPhone, this changes everything again

10. ViBRATOt49

Posts: 17; Member since: Aug 06, 2009

yess!!!!

11. XPERIA-KNIGHT unregistered

welp its good to see who wears the "pants" in this relationship.....good job Google :)

12. JeffdaBeat unregistered

Thank god...

14. MichaelHeller

Posts: 2734; Member since: May 26, 2011

Does God work at Google these days?

15. XPERIA-KNIGHT unregistered

haha if he wasn't working "with" them or even "on" them, wouldn't have the nexus 4 (yes i know some of us still don't have it lol) .......and also apple wouldn't have this! :)

21. JeffdaBeat unregistered

I lowercased god for the reason that god doesn't exist :-)

16. Droid_X_Doug

Posts: 5993; Member since: Dec 22, 2010

Things at iMaps must be worse than Apple is letting on. First there are the rumors that Apple is going to acquire TomTom. Now gMaps gets approved for App Store, when almost everyone (Google included) was betting on it being denied. At least Apple seems to be giving its customers the option to make their own choice. Props to Apple.

17. wendygarett unregistered

Yeah I really need to say thank you so much to Google fir doing this :)

20. Droid_X_Doug

Posts: 5993; Member since: Dec 22, 2010

One thing that is different between gMaps and Navigation app on JB - no integration with contacts in gMaps.... It is really handy to be able to access contacts to find the address for Navigation to search for.

44. zibbyzib2000

Posts: 221; Member since: Nov 18, 2010

I agree. Apple is changing little by little. The update to the Bump app now allows music, documents in iBooks, and video transfers. Before it only allowed you to send contacts and pictures.

45. stealthd unregistered

If Google was "betting on it being denied", they would not have wasted time and money paying employees to make it.

18. thelegend6657 unregistered

Turn by turn Nav by Google maps isnt available in my country . Hey even apple and Nokia supports turn by turn nav

22. minteke

Posts: 30; Member since: Jul 27, 2012

So what the problem, just change your country!

36. thelegend6657 unregistered

If I can I would do it long ago . I hate Malaysia

23. neutralguy

Posts: 1152; Member since: Apr 30, 2012

"hey a google maps.. great! apple is so cool, android sucks"

24. rcrider4

Posts: 118; Member since: Nov 14, 2011

I just tested this against the built in Apple Maps, and I have to say I was surprised that Apple's maps app worked much faster and gave more results for my searches. I haven't tested navigation yet, as I am not going anywhere right now, but for now, I see no reason to switch over other than the inclusion of street view, which I don't really use often, and I can easily open the app if it was needed. (And now it's time for the Android fanboys to vote me down because I gave an unbiased test between two maps services and Google didn't win...)

27. wando77

Posts: 1168; Member since: Aug 23, 2012

I guess the whole world must have made it all up

31. rcrider4

Posts: 118; Member since: Nov 14, 2011

Oh and I forgot that fact that it doesn't integrate with your contacts, so getting directions to a friend's house takes much longer than necessary.

* Some comments have been hidden, because they don't meet the discussions rules.

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