The technology giant Apple is competing with Google with its improved map service: more details and optimized navigation functions are initially waiting for users in Munich. Photo: Sven Hoppe / dpa/Archive
Digital maps have become the basis for many applications, from a springboard for finding nearby shops and eateries to navigation in the car. A good decade ago, Apple made the strategic decision to build its own map service instead of the Google maps initially used in the iPhone. After initial difficulties, the group is investing heavily in the service and, among other things, sent camera cars to German cities.
These images are not only used for the “look around” function, but also for the improvement of the maps to the display of speed limits and details such as crosswalks. Another innovation is more concrete navigation instructions such as “right after the next traffic light” instead of “right after 50 meters”.
In shopping centers, the app should now lead not only to the parking garage, but also to the desired store. In several German cities, the map app will be able to access the iPhone camera in the future in order to display directional arrows in the streetscape on the display for better orientation.
Apple had presented the new version of the map service at the beginning of June last year at the WWDC developer conference. It has been available in eight countries to date, including the US, UK, Spain, Italy and Portugal.