Three Features Google Maps Must Copy From Its Rivals

While the current number of Google Maps alternatives makes it rather easy to find another navigation app on iPhone and Android, many people just stick with Google’s service for a reason that makes perfect sense.
Google Maps is currently the top navigation app 10 photos
Photo: Google
3D navigation on Apple MapsWaze on CarPlayGoogle Maps on Android AutoGoogle Maps on Android AutoGoogle Maps navigationGoogle Maps navigationGoogle Maps navigationGoogle Maps navigationGoogle Maps navigation
Google Maps is a fully-featured platform that includes more than just the basic feature package to get you from where you are to where you want to go.

In other words, Google Maps’ feature arsenal manages to cover the needs of most users out there, therefore becoming the navigation app of choice for the majority of drivers.

On the other hand, this doesn’t by any means mean Google Maps is the perfect navigation solution. Not at all, and the problems the application has encountered lately are just living proof on this front.

At the same time, rival apps have come up with brilliant ideas that more or less make Google Maps feel outdated at certain times. And at the end of the day, these are actually the features Google Maps should copy to significantly improve its navigation component.

Incident reporting from Waze

While some reports are already available in Google Maps, the application needs a true incident reporting feature a la Waze.

Ironically, Waze is also a Google-owned company, and Google Maps actually receives some data, including traffic information and accident reports, from its sibling. But what Google Maps should receive is the crowdsourcing reporting system that would turn it into the ultimate navigation app.

In theory, this would pretty much turn Waze into a redundant application that wouldn’t make much sense anyway, and this is probably the reason Google doesn’t want to push Google Maps in this direction in the first place.

For now, however, Waze and Google continue to follow their own paths, though don’t be too surprised if a merge takes place at one point.

Waze on CarPlay
Photo: autoevolution

3D navigation from Apple Maps

Google has been working hard on making the navigation experience as straightforward as possible, but long-time rival Apple has recently announced a feature that would substantially help Google Maps in this regard.

Apple is also working non-stop on building a better Google Maps rival, and one of its latest innovations is support for 3D navigation.

Available in the U.S., the 3D navigation makes the experience overall a lot more straightforward and convenient, especially because it’s easier for drivers to figure out where they are.

Of course, making such a feature happen isn’t by any means easy, though Google does have the resources to develop it. And without a doubt, 3D navigation will still come to Google Maps anyway, sooner or later, but for now, the search giant prefers to remain tight-lipped on the whole thing.

3D navigation on Apple Maps
Photo: Apple

Truck navigation from Sygic

While Google Maps is a great navigation app, its feature arsenal is only available for passenger cars. In other words, if you’re driving an RV or a lorry, Google Maps should actually be avoided, as it may end up sending you on roads where the vehicle doesn’t fit.

It’s not a secret that some drivers ended up stuck on narrow roads after following Google Maps navigation, and it’s all because the app has no idea how large your vehicle really is.

Sygic has managed to deal with this shortcoming by developing a dedicated truck navigation mode that takes into account the dimensions of the vehicles you drive. This way, the software can find the best appropriate route, thus making sure you won’t be directed to roads where you could eventually get stuck.

Once again, Google hasn’t said a single thing about a potential truck navigation mode, even though such a feature would totally make sense for users across the world.
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About the author: Bogdan Popa
Bogdan Popa profile photo

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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