First Navigation App With CarPlay Dashboard Support Getting Better and Better

Magic Earth on the CarPlay dashboard 1 photo
Photo: reddit
As of the spring of this year, CarPlay no longer forces users to stick with Apple Maps on the dashboard, as the Cupertino-based tech giant decided to unlock the multi-view screen to third-party navigation apps too.
But as CarPlay users probably know already, Google hasn’t necessarily been in a rush to add support for the dashboard, with Google Maps eventually getting this update in late summer.

On the other hand, the first navigation app in the Apple ecosystem to boast CarPlay dashboard support was Magic Earth, a not so popular alternative to Google Maps that still comes with features really worth checking out.

And what’s more, the parent company behind Magic Earth didn’t rest on its laurels, so the latest app updates brought additional improvements and new features for iPhone users.

For example, version 7.5.3 introduced support for iOS 14 widgets (the new feature Apple launched with so much fanfare in the fall), as well as CarPlay support for Siri Shortcuts and road codes. Furthermore, Magic Earth 7.5.7, which was released earlier this month, resolved a startup issue on CarPlay causing GPS problems. Overall, the app is not only getting additional new features but also receives extra polishing for a more refined experience on CarPlay.

Magic Earth comes with an impressive lineup of features on CarPlay, including offline map support powered by OpenStreetMap, multiple map views, parking data, and an integrated AI dashcam with extra gimmicks like lane departure warning and pedestrian collision warning.

Real-time traffic information is also available, though based on my testing, the accuracy of the data depends on the region, so the app could occasionally miss a traffic jam on your route.

However, given all the improvements it has received lately, Magic Earth is at least worth a shot, especially if you’re using navigation apps on CarPlay behind the wheel. It comes free of charge, so you can give it a try without spending a single cent.
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About the author: Bogdan Popa
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Bogdan keeps an eye on how technology is taking over the car world. His long-term goals are buying an 18-wheeler because he needs more space for his kid’s toys, and convincing Google and Apple that Android Auto and CarPlay deserve at least as much attention as their phones.
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