How to Find the Best Directions on iPhone by Comparing Alternative Routes on Maps App Directions

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If you run into a road with an iPhone, you’ll probably rely on Apple Maps or Google Maps to get you to your destination. But before you make an uncertain decision, make sure to check the default routes and compare other routes in both map apps to find the best route. Don’t be surprised if the two apps give you very different recommendations at first. If you haven’t already, grab the Google Maps for iPhone app before you set off, it’s best if you already have the app on your iPhone before you hit the road, so you don’t need to download it while driving.

The choice of alternative routes is almost the same in both map applications:

  • Your journey route or destination as usual
  • See the alternative routes by tapping the dimmed lines on the map to see different directions

Now comes the hardest part, which is choosing the instructions for use. It is highly recommended to look at the actual driving directions before you leave instead of staying on the road and relying on alternate navigation. This way, if you see something that doesn’t look right, you can find a better way before it’s too late and you’re in the middle of nowhere. Also keep in mind that the shortest travel routes will not always be the fastest, especially in bad weather or heavy traffic.

Don’t forget to show traffic information in both Maps as well, as it can cause significant delays. Google Maps also has a slight advantage in terms of traffic, simply because more people use the service and it gives you instant traffic information for routes in general:

Google Maps traffic information is displayed along the route

The more I used the Apple and Google map service, the more I noticed that each of them provides an additional route that is completely unique to their service, as the screenshots show. As a result, I always aim for routes that are shared between the two services and that is the most common sense, and often not the first route for either application.

Without this discussion of which map app is better, you may find that these two applications give different total and time estimates, even for the same routes. And while Apple Maps generally does a good job on highways, it has chosen some unusual routes before you reach a side road, which are likely faster than the route’s destination. For this reason, I highly recommend using both map apps and comparing the same distances with both, and then using common sense alone to decide the final route. Have a nice trip!

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Apple devices only.

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