Google Maps Is Back On iOS 6! Well, Sort Of.

Senior Contributor
10.10.12 4 Comments

Hate Apple Maps? That was a rhetorical question. Nobody likes Apple Maps. Tim Cook hates Apple Maps. Far be it from us to be hyperbolic in our disgust, but it’s a festering pustule on the face of an otherwise glorious phone. So, nerds being nerds, nerd Katsumi Kishikawa actually did something about it. He built a free app that lets you use “Standard” maps or “Classic” maps.

Granted, this is only a stopgap until Google finishes up its iOS 6 Maps app. But if you missed the “Classic” maps, it’s a very clever workaround. Kishikawa’s design essentially allows you to use an alternate mapping system that closely resembles the one you had in iOS 5 by pulling map data from outside Apple’s ecosystem. You can even do side-by-side comparisons, which is probably one of the most elegant ways to stick it to Apple that I’ve ever seen.

There are, however, a few tradeoffs. Not even Kishikawa is insisting this is full featured: There’s no Street View, no Points of Interest, and relative to Apple Maps, it’s much slower. That said, the entire project is available on GitHub, so it’s likely to get some pretty good overhauls fairly quickly. It’s also a given that Apple will drop on this at some point like a sack of anvils, so you might want to download this as soon as possible.

Also, for turn by turn directions, which don’t seem to be supported, our commenters have recommended Waze. And you know what? They’re right. It’s great. Granted I wish there was an all-in-one solution, but at least there’s something workable until Google gets it together.

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