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1/23/2013
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Top GPS Apps for the iPhone - 2013 Edition

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.

Honorable Mention — Apple Maps

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Satellite Images
Apple Maps was introduced with the release of iOS 6 and the coverage of its gimps and glitches are well known. The issues currently encountered by the app led to Scott Forestall's departure from Apple and a public apology from Tim Cook. BYTE's Editorial Director, Larry Seltzer seems to think that the damage done to Apple Maps by all the errors, issues and bad press is irreparable.

I'm not certain I agree. I think recovering from Apple's current, perceived level of quality is possible; but will require a complete overhaul of the app. It will definitely require a full version rev (from 1.0 to 2.0) and not an evolutionary, gradual change over the next few iOS releases, which is Apple's current M.O. with most of its apps and products. They need to correct the problems with the app immediately, or else they need to pull it.

...And pulling it would be a shame. The UI for the app is really rather elegant. If data for your current geographical area is correct and/or reasonably accurate, you should have no problem using Apple Maps to get around town or to do local search. The problem comes when your area's data is not up-to-date. Unfortunately, right now, it's a crap shoot at best, as there's no way to tell without actually trying to find the Golden Gate Bridge or Statue of Liberty that they've actually melted, at least according to Apple Maps.

Click here for the Apple Maps home page
Price: Free
App Type: Maps on Demand
Included with iOS 6.x

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Alternative Routes
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Turn-by-Turn Live
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Turn-by-Turn Route Overview

Next Page: Honorable Mention — Waze

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