Columbus Day Navigation Apps: 7 GPS Apps That Beat iOS 6 Maps10:00 AM EST Mon. Oct. 08, 2012
When Apple CEO Tim Cook officially apologized for the faulty Map app in iOS 6, he recommended some other apps that could be used to replace it, such as Bing, MapQuest and Waze. Here at the CRN Test Center, we'd like to provide some insight on several other navigation apps to consider while Apple licks its wounds.
Here are seven apps to help ease the daily commute, speed up the service call or help find cheap gas before it leaves you stuck.
Waze for Android and iOS is one navigation app that Tim Cook and the CRN Test Center agree is one of the best. It's a GPS navigation tool with the main purpose of helping drivers navigate through congested traffic and get an accurate ETA based on information coming in from fellow Waze users, which it refers to as "Wazers." Anytime Waze notices a slow down, or if the driver manually enters news of an accident or hazard, that data is used to update ETAs and provide optimal routes for other Wazers. Waze also accepts hands-free voice commands and delivers turn-by-turn navigation. You can even chat with other Wazers to find out how the road is looking up ahead. Although, don't forget: no texting and driving! We don't want any crashes due to posting or reading Waze pop-up notification while the car is in motion.
Where2Boss for iOS is an interactive navigation app that uses GPS and traffic data to provide ETAs, helping to evaluate the skills and trustworthiness of taxi drivers. During taxi rides, the app compares the road being taken by the driver with what it calculates as the best possible route, and it can accept input and complaints linked with a driver's license or plate number. The ETA is updated every minute, and it takes into account the various road conditions ahead of the current position. With Where2Boss, good drivers can earn points and badges for passing landmarks or beating the app's original ETAs.
Turn by Turn Navigation for Windows Phone 7 is a highly rated app that speaks directions to the driver and accepts input by touching points of interest on a map found after address or name searches. The tool also can navigate directly to addresses in the Windows address book.
Other features of Turn by Turn Navigation include automatic map rotation based on where the users is heading, the ability to save favorites and points of interest, real-time traffic reports and rerouting, automatic rerouting for missed turns or in-route course changes, map pre-loading and automatic volume control based on travel speed. Turn by Turn Navigation also provides text-based travel itineraries, walking directions and U.S. and metric distance units, and it has the ability to avoid toll roads.
If only a name-brand GPS app will do, consider TomTom U.S for Android and TomTom U.S & Canada for iOS. This navigation app uses real-time traffic updates and can shave hours per week from commutes. TomTom U.S & Canada has the capacity to take geo-tagged photos on your iPhone and then map turn-by-turn directions to the location where the picture was taken. It also can navigate to contacts or copied addresses. There’s also a departure reminder feature that works by sending alerts from trips that have been added to the phone's calendar.
YP Mobile for Android, iOS and Windows Phone 7 does more than provide guided navigation, it also brings categorized business listings, menus, hours, directions and user reviews to your smartphone or other mobile device. What's more, the app can even help find the lowest gas prices in the immediate area.
YP Mobile can be used to find coffee shops, bars and restaurants, banks, hotels, movie theaters, auto mechanics and rentals, hospitals, dentist offices, grocery stores, taxi services and much more. It also can search for local businesses that offer a Wi-Fi hotspot. If a location other than your current one is desired, simply enter an address or zip code to change the search results it finds over Wi-Fi, 3G or 4G.
Gas Up Free for Windows Phone 7 provides much of the same functionality as YP Mobile's Gas Prices feature, including the ability to display gas prices of all grades (plus diesel) along with station names, addresses, maps and directions. But, Gas Up Free also provides more control over sorting, can create favorites and custom searches, and display driving routes with support for visual decisions and price alerts. The tool also makes use of Windows Phone 7's Live Tiles, displaying gas prices of nearby stations in real time.
Holy hands-free phone! Turn your phone into a superhero sidekick with Robin for Android, a navigation app that accepts voice command and provides hands-free driving assistance. Robin gives turn-by-turn GPS navigation and traffic reports, shows speed traps, finds the nearest and cheapest parking, and can answer a multitude of questions. Robin also can find gas stations and read Yelp reviews and Twitter feeds. POW!