After months of using flawed Apple Maps, iPhone users will now be able to find their way again. Google released its long-awaited Google Maps update for the newest iPhone Wednesday.
"People around the world have been asking for Google Maps on iPhone. Starting today, we're pleased to announce that Google Maps is here—rolling out across the world in the Apple App Store," the company wrote on its official blog.
When the latest iPhone upgrade, iO6, debuted in September, it featured only Apple's GPS navigation app, Apple Maps. Previous upgrades had come with Google Maps, but the two tech giants bickered over spoken turn-by-turn directions, which Google featured on its Android Google Maps app, but not on the iPhone version. So Apple scrapped Google Maps in favor of its own map app, which featured spoken turn-by-turn directions. But it turns out building a good navigation app is expensive and time consuming, and without Google's head start Apple's attempt had more than a few navigation issues and technical glitches. The app was bad enough that Apple's chief executive, Tim Cook, apologized for it in a letter to customers in September.
"We are extremely sorry for the frustration this has caused our customers, and we are doing everything we can to make Maps better," Cook wrote.
Thanks to Wednesday's announcement, those customers can upgrade their iPhones without being stuck with Apple Maps.
The new Google Maps features turn-by-turn navigation and public transit maps, and it's clearly appreciated. It became the most-downloaded app in the Apple Store within seven hours of its release. The announcement was also greeted with relief, and snark, on Twitter.
GDP forecast for next quarter revised up to 10.7%, as excitement over Google Maps app builds— daveweigel (@daveweigel) December 13, 2012
Google Maps returns to the iPhone. Apple Maps re-turns and you end up lost in Susquehanna.— Warren Holstein (@WarrenHolstein) December 13, 2012
"Great! Now I won't get lost anymore!" - Apple Maps as it downloaded Google Maps for iOS.— Michelle Wolf (@michelleisawolf) December 13, 2012
Google Maps Now Back On iPhone's - Now I Wont Have To Drive Into The River Again— DJ Rye (@djrye) December 13, 2012
Giggling like a school girl now with Google Maps back on my iPhone.— Tony Fratto (@TonyFratto) December 13, 2012