A new native Google Maps app for iOS devices went live in Apple's App Store today, bringing some relief to those suffering Apple's own flawed maps app included in iOS 6.
While iPhone and iPad users operating on iOS 6 have been able to access Google Maps from their browser, the native app released today will offer a better user experience.
In an uncharacterstic move, Apple launched iOS 6 with a new Apple Maps app that was essentially a beta product. Users complained of inaccuracies in the directions, and a lack of public transit directions, a feature Google's product has perfected.
Equally uncharacteristic was Apple CEO Tim Cook's apology for the Apple Maps debacle. Cook went so far as to reccomend third-party apps that would fill the void left by Google Maps.
In a blog on Google's website, Daniel Graf, director of Google Maps for mobile, said the new iPhone app has been "designed from the ground up." "The app shows more map on screen and turns mobile mapping into one intuitive experience," Graf wrote. "It’s a sharper looking, vector-based map that loads quickly and provides smooth tilting and rotating of 2D and 3D views."
Google also said it has released the Google Maps SDK for iOS, and a simple URL scheme to help developers use Google Maps when building their apps. The new Google Maps app is available for free for the iPhone and iPod Touch (4th gen) iOS 5.1 and higher, in more than 40 countries and 29 languages.
Take a closer look at Google's new maps for iOS in the video below: