Apple Maps just doesn't cut it for everyone, so there is a rich market of GPS alternatives for the iPhone. Many are good. In this review we test Google Maps for iOS, Navigon USA, Gokivo, MapQuest, Scout, Nokia HERE Maps, Waze and even Apple Maps.
At one time, MapQuest was THE online destination for written directions when you needed to go out and about. Some eight to ten years later, I still have friends and family who want to Map Quest their way from one place to another despite the fact that they have a smartphone with a navigation solution already on it, or just a few taps away.
Today, MapQuest for iOS is an OK navigation app for your GPS-enabled device. It provides 2-D navigation and is missing the 3-D navigation as well as the 3-D lane assistance that is now becoming common in other apps. Unfortunately, it's also ad funded and a small part of your screen is given over to rotating banner ads. I'm not single, and if I was, I wouldn't be interested in match.com while I drive. A better ad strategy would be to wait until I searched for a local business, and then showed me ads from the business I searched for or from similar local businesses. Match.com has nothing to do with the restaurant or gas station I'm currently searching for.
The screen provides decent information while navigating, aside from the reappearing/disappearing banner ads, and its voice guided navigation isn't bad. I was. however, a bit surprised to find that zoomed-in maps were a bit blurry the closer to the street you got. For a moment, I thought it might be me, my new glasses or bad eyes. Its GPS accuracy, the closer you got to full magnification, decreased. Street text labels also got nearly too small to read at full magnification.
When compared to Google Maps, or even Apple Maps, both of those seem to be more sophisticated, better functioning applications, providing a better, overall navigation experience than MapQuest. When compared to Google Maps specifically, Google Maps seems to wipe the floor with MapQuest for iOS. However, it's still a decent choice; and the price is right, especially if it's something you're familiar with from the PC side of the world.
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