Apple Maps has made slight adjustments to better promote things like food delivery and medical services during the COVID-19 pandemic. Apple’s adjustments follow similar changes made by Google Maps, though Apple does not go as far in its efforts.
As first spotted by iPhone Ticker, Apple has adjusted the order of Apple Maps categories. Grocery stores are now featured at the top, followed by a new category for Food Delivery. Other categories that are less practical during the COVID-19 outbreak have been shifted downwards.
When you choose the new Food Delivery category, you see all of the nearby restaurants that are open and providing delivery options. Previously, Apple Maps generally prioritized categories including Restaurants, Fast Good, Gas Stations, and Cafes.
This is a small but notable change for Apple Maps and it follows some similar changes made by Google. For instance, Google Maps includes a COVID-19 warning message when searching for medical locations, which Apple Maps has not yet implemented. The warning instructs people to call their doctor before visiting if they are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms.
Google Maps is also making it more clear when a business is temporarily closed because of COVID-19. Apple Maps, on the other hand, lists businesses as open, even if they are closed due to shelter in place orders. Google Maps also highlights takeout and delivery restaurants.
Apple in March debuted its own COVID-19 application and website developed in partnership with FEMA and the CDC. Over the weekend, Tim Cook revealed that Apple’s mask donations have topped 20 million and that the company is shipping a custom face shield to medical workers as well.
Elsewhere, Siri has been updated to include a new questionnaire for queries about coronavirus. Apple Card customers can also defer their payments without penalty due to the economic uncertainty caused by the outbreak.
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