Subscribe / Unsubscribe Enewsletters | Login | Register

Pencil Banner

The best apps for navigation on the iPhone

David Bradforth | July 22, 2013
Find your way around with help from the iPhone and one of a number of navigation apps. We pick the best.

Find your way around with help from the iPhone and one of a number of navigation apps. We pick the best.


Supplier: Apple
Price: Free
Pros: Included on your iPhone or iPad already; Good turn-by-turn navigation; Works well offline
Cons: The maps have been reported to be inaccurate at places; not something that's particularly useful for navigation


Launched at the same time as iOS 6, Maps was released as the new default mapping solution for the iPhone and iPad; replacing the long-favoured Google Maps. Apples stated aim was to provide a product that improved upon the user experience from Google Maps and then added a tonne of new features. Unfortunately they failed.

It's not a bad mapping solution; far from it. Type into the search bar where you want to view and it'll take you straight there. Using the 'arrow' you can find yourself on the map.

To navigate anywhere tap the 'Route' button then enter where you want to go by either car or foot. The app then opens up the directions as either a list or you can follow them in the veign of turn-by-turn satnav. If the experience of the turn-by-turn seems familiar this may be because it is supplied by TomTom.

Google Maps

google maps

Supplier: Google
Price: Free
Pros: The best mapping experience; Superb turn-by-turn navigation; Instantly familiar
Cons: Can cache map data for offline use, but limited to the local area of your map


Google Maps version 2 was recently released bringing with it full support for the iPad and iPad mini.

In addition to a dedicated iPad design, it includes the new 'explore' feature, bringing local restaurants, bars, cafes, and more to investigate further. Also new is the addition of live traffic updates and incident reports to the maps and indoor maps for a selection of shopping centres and airports.

The turn by turn navigation is superb. So long as the data is correct on Google it's correct within Google Maps and you can either be driving or walking. If you are walking though consider keeping your phone in your pocket and just following the audio directions.



Supplier: NavMii
Price: Free (in-app purchases allow upgrades)
Pros: Easy to use; Streetview; Can search through Google as well as by location or postcode; Optional add-ons such as additional voices available
Cons: Nothing significant


NavFree operates just as a TomTom or Garmin SatNav would: you enter a postcode, or an address and it provides a quick and effective route to get you where you need to be. Additionally, you can also carry out a Google search for a business name then navigate to that business based on the results fed back to the app.


1  2  Next Page 

Sign up for CIO Asia eNewsletters.