navigation Stories November 16, 2015

Waze 3D Touch

Last month the popular Waze navigation app on iPhone got a major update with a new design and improvements to reporting traffic issues and sharing arrival times with others. Now Waze is out with its next new version which brings 3D Touch shortcuts to the Home screen icon for iPhone 6s and 6s Plus users. Firmly press on the updated icon to quickly look up an address, share your location with other users, or get directions to your work or home address from your current location. Waze also says the update includes the usual bug fixes and improvements.

Fantastical already features 3D Touch shortcuts from its Home screen icon, and today the calendar and reminders app is adding more 3D Touch features for iPhone 6s and 6s Plus users… expand full story

navigation Stories November 10, 2015

Google Maps 16-9

Google will soon be bringing a major new feature to its Maps app for iOS: full offline support. Google Maps has some utility already when used offline, but an upcoming update will make it much more robust when used without Internet access. For example, before you could see an area on Google Maps offline but not do much else with it. Coming soon, Google will enable features including navigation and business information lookup without requiring an active Internet connection. expand full story

navigation Stories October 19, 2015

Waze iOS app gets major design revamp for easier navigation, reporting and sharing [Video]

The iOS Waze app has been given a major redesign intended to make it easier to use for navigating, reporting problems and sharing your ETA with others.

Steps to navigate have been minimized. The Waze map, menus and road reporting system are redesigned for higher visibility and clarity, including less clutter on the map, brighter buttons, and color-coded pins per report type. From head to toe, Waze has been revamped with a stronger focus on the driver and the social driving experience.

Interestingly, although Waze is now owned by Google, the iOS app has been updated ahead of the Android version … 

navigation Stories August 20, 2015

Apple Watch comes with Apple Maps, which allows you to find your current location, pan and zoom around on the area, search the map, get information about a location, call a location, get directions, and more. One of the benefits of having Maps on the watch is that it allows you to get directions without needing to pull out your iPhone, especially if you happen to be lost or in a sketchy neighborhood. In this how-to article, we will discuss how to use Apple Maps on the Apple Watch.

expand full story

navigation Stories May 28, 2015

Google-io-offline-maps

As part of its Google I/O developer conference today, Google is offering some updates on its Google Places API for iOS as well as future updates arriving for its Maps app. expand full story

navigation Stories March 4, 2015

Maps details

Apple applies for and gets awarded patents for everything under the sun, and patents don’t always translate to shipped features. Disclaimer aside, the iPhone maker was recently awarded a patent for a potentially useful feature that could help you avoid areas with weak cellular coverage when planning your trip with navigation in Maps.

The USPTO awarded Apple with a patent (via Gigaom) to analyze routes between two locations and “employ an algorithm that considers wireless network signal strengths along those routes.”

In other words, because your iPhone can collect and measure cellular signal data and many iPhone users anonymously share travel data with Apple, there’s potential for Maps to know which routes problematically contain dead zones and suggest lengthier routes with better signal. expand full story

navigation Stories October 1, 2014

One of the problems the new iPhone 6 models present is where to put it when you’re in the car. You may not want to keep it in your pocket for obvious reasons, especially the iPhone 6 Plus, and the new models are larger and slipperier than ever. Keeping it in the seat next to you probably means it’ll end up on the floor. With the larger displays and new features introduced with iOS 8, using a car mount is more useful than ever. I’ve been trying out Kenu’s Airframe+, which supports even the 5.5-inch iPhone 6 Plus (with a case too), and I’ve found using a car mount offers up a number of benefits. expand full story

navigation Stories July 11, 2014

Google Maps for iOS adds mapped search results and Gmail appointments, more

Google today updated its Maps application for iPhone and iPad to version 3.2 introducing new features and improvements.

The latest version of Google Maps now supports viewing search results with descriptions directly on the map view. Gmail users will notice appointments and reservations with addresses will now appear the map view as well. The update supports changing between the map view of results and the list view of results and features an explore view for discovering new locations to try out.

Google Maps 3.2 for iPhone and iPad is out today on the App Store.

navigation Stories July 8, 2014

MapQuest navigation app updated with improved ETAs, baseball guides, airport maps and more

Navigation app MapQuest has been updated to version 4.4, offering more accurate ETAs thanks to better traffic data; an app-specific volume control that allows you to set the voice navigation volume independently of other apps; Ballpark Guides to MLB stadiums and airport maps; and GrubHub integration to allow you to order food from take-out restaurants before the app navigates you there to collect it.

navigation Stories February 20, 2014

Waze app gets Calendar integration for navigating to upcoming events

Waze, the navigation app maker that Google picked up last year, announced today that its updating its mobile apps with calendar integration. With the updated app, iOS and Android users will now see “events with location info will automatically appear” in the navigation list within Waze. That means any events in your calendar that have location info associated with them will be viewable from within Waze.

The company notes that only two upcoming events from your Calendar will be displayed in the navigation list. Users that want to disable the Calendar integration can do so from the iOS Settings app.

The updated app isn’t yet live on the App Store but should be rolling out any minute.

navigation Stories October 15, 2013

Google Maps for iOS updated w/ quick access to navigation, new languages, & more

Google updated its Google Maps app for iPhone and iPad today with a few new features as the app moves to version 2.3.4. Google says the updated app includes “Faster access to navigation,” which includes new overviews for traffic and routes.

The updated app also includes a new Tips and Tricks section available from the side menu and support for new languages, including: Arabic and Hebrew. Google also notes that the new supported languages will offer voice guidance “where available.”

A full list of what’s new below:

What’s New in Version 2.3.4

● Faster access to navigation, complete with route and traffic overview ● Tips and Tricks available in the side menu �� Arabic and Hebrew now supported, including voice guidance in navigation, where available ● Bug fixes

navigation Stories July 4, 2013

Apple-maps-ratings-alerts

According to a new Apple patent application published today by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (via AppleInsider), Apple is looking into new mapping features that would integrate real-time, crowd-sourced traffic and navigation data through ratings and user reporting.

At first glance the features appear to be similar to those included in the community-based mapping app ‘Waze’, which is one of the reasons that Google just acquired the company last month. The patent application, titled “User-Specified Route Rating and Alerts,” describes a system for users to “provide ratings for routes, streets and/or locations.” In other words, users can rate a suggested route when getting directions in order to provide crowd-sourced feedback to Apple and in return Apple will provide the most efficient and accurate routes to other users based on the ratings:

Particular implementations provide at least the following advantages: Route determination is improved by accounting for real-world considerations and concerns of travelers. Real-time user-generated alerts allow for faster and more accurate notification of events within proximity of a user that might hinder the user’s progress as the user travels… In some implementations, rating database 110 can store information related to users’ ratings of routes and/or locations. For example, a user of mobile device 102 can interact with navigation engine 104 to provide ratings for routes and/or locations. The ratings information provided by the user can be transmitted to navigation service 106 through network 114. Navigation service 106 can store the ratings information in rating database 110 and route engine can determine routes based on the ratings information stored in rating database 110.

Apple also walks through a process of gathering user-generated alerts for routes including accident reports, road closures, etc. Apple plans on taking all the alert and route rating data and providing it to other users in real-time to improve route directions. In other words, if your device is detected to be in the same location as a user-generated alert, Apple will be able to push that alert to your device or suggest an alternate route based on the incident that’s been reported:

expand full story

navigation Stories June 24, 2013

Amazon Instant Video iOS app gets revamped UI with personalized TV & movie collections

Amazon has updated its Instant Video app for iPhone and iPad today with a revamped user interface that makes it easier to find movies and TV shows.

The improved UI includes much faster navigation of TV shows and movies thanks to a new drop down menu on the home screen of the app, as well as “a new navigation bar on the browse screens allowing you to find and switch between the different TV and movie collections.” 

Also new is “more personalized carousels on the homescreen” that provide quick access to TV shows and movies recommended for you based on your previous viewing habits.

A full list of what’s new is below:

What’s New in Version 1.4.3

We’ve made it faster and easier to find the videos you want to watch, adding a dropdown menu on the homescreen providing access to dozens of movie and TV collections. We’ve also added more personalized carousels on the homescreen, and provided a new navigation bar on the browse screens allowing you to find and switch between the different TV and movie collections.

navigation Stories May 15, 2013

We showed you significant updates to Google Maps which leaked early this morning, and Google just announced updates to Maps at Google I/O.

Google also announced that its Maps API is used by over 1 million active sites and accessed by 1 billion unique visitors weekly.

Maps will now feature a 5 star rating system for locations across all platforms. Users can now swipe across results in a simple, gesture user interface. Zagat reviews are now more prominent with badges and cards simplifying its appearance. These cards now include a new Offers experience with partners including Starbucks.

Google Maps for Mobile also includes improvements to rerouting in transit and explore features. Google Maps for iPad was demoed during the keynote, which we expect to see with the iPhone update this summer. expand full story

navigation Stories June 15, 2012

With the introduction of iOS 6 this fall, many iOS users will be left out on some of the new operating system’s flagship features. We already covered Apple’s official list of compatibility for iOS 6 features, and by far one of the most disappointing for iPhone 4 users was the news that they would not have access to the Flyover and turn-by-turn navigation features in Apple’s new in-house Maps app. Today, we have news from Russian website iGuides (via SlashGear) that iOS developer Anton Titkov found a way to get Apple’s new 3D maps up and running on the iPhone 4:

After yesterday’s release of jailbreak iOS 6 developer, well known to all users iGuides Anton Titkov (iTony) decided to dig a little bit in the new firmware, and became the first man in the world, who managed to get working 3D card on the iPhone 4. New tweak from Anton Titkova called 3DEnabler , and at the moment we can confidently say that it adds support for 3D cards on the “old” devices, but it is possible that the “unavailable” Turn-by-turn navigation will be defeated by our talented developer.

iGuides offers instructions for the hack on its website, while another video of 3DEnabler running on iPhone 4 is below: expand full story

navigation Stories January 11, 2012

TomTom unveiled a new version of its iPhone and iPad app at CES 2012 that utilizes data from social networks like Facebook and Twitter to provide users with enhanced navigation to friends, places, and events.

The press release does not provide much information on exactly how TomTom is using social network data, but the company claimed it would be a source for turn-by-turn navigation features baked into the current iOS apps. TomTom will obviously have to avoid user-generated data that might be inaccurate, but it is unclear what specific data the app will access. From the screenshots above, it appears you will be able to easily navigate to friends who have recently checked-in (with their location) to a social network.

The new app, version v1.10, will also allow you to share your destination and ETA through email, SMS, Twitter, or Facebook. Managing Director Consumer at TomTom Corinne Vigreux explained:

expand full story

navigation Stories August 11, 2011

In a report from Computerworld way back in 2009, we learned that Apple had quietly acquired Maps API company Placebase. Then, founder of Placebase and CEO, Jaron Waldman, started working at Apple on a new “Geo Team”, presumably helping to integrate Placebase mapping technologies into future Apple products.

Fast forward two years to a new patent application titled “Schematic Maps”, filed by Apple Inc. and published today with Waldman, along with Placebase co-founder Moran Ben-David, listed as inventors.

Essentially the patent describes new methods of modifying a map in order to highlight certain objects by distorting others. For example, Apple could provide more data to the user (especially those on smaller screens) by blurring useless data and highlighting what it predicts is most useful to the user at any given time. You can imagine this being particularly useful for navigation. If a user were to request directions to a specific location, the maps could dynamically blur data that isn’t helpful and modify objects or landmarks that would otherwise be difficult to locate.

A snippet from the patent summary explains:

The following relates to preparing and presenting schematic maps, which are maps that present information in a format that presents only information that is most relevant to a given situation in order to provide a simple and clear representation sufficient to aid a user in guidance or orientation. The schematic maps as described herein can be formatted based on the attributes of a display on which they are presented so that the map layout and presentation can be optimized for the particular display. The schematic maps can be “distorted” to better illustrate important maps areas in greater detail and using a relatively larger display area while deemphasizing less important map areas by illustrating them in less detail and using a relatively smaller display area, and thus the schematic maps can be devoid of adherence to a particular scale.

There was originally speculation that Apple might be acquiring Placebase in order to build their own native Maps application, rather than having to rely on Google Maps. With the patent wars heating up and relationships between smartphone makers weakening, the likelihood of Apple not wanting to rely on their rivals for key technologies is increasing. expand full story

Powered by WordPress VIP