Apple Maps Now Dominates Google Maps on iPhone, iPad

You may recall the criticism Apple faced in 2012 with the launch of Apple Maps: remember the world-famous George Washington Bridge after it collapsed into the Hudson River (exclusive to Apple Maps app) and the like.

apple maps toronto transit_2.jpg

Fast forward to today and Apple Maps is now used more widely than Google Maps on iPhones, according to a report from the Associated Press. Why? Because Apple has put tremendous effort into fixing the errors all of us noticed and warned the company about. Also, it has quietly acquired several mapping companies for their talent.

Apple says its mapping service is now used more than three times as often as its next leading competitor on iPhones and iPads, with more than 5 billion map-related requests each week. Research firm comScore says Apple has a modest lead over Google on iPhones in the U.S., though comScore measures how many people use a service in a given month rather than how often.

Google Maps still dominates the US landscape (Apple Maps isn’t available on Android): Google has more than twice as many smartphone users as Apple Maps, as it is the default mapping app on Android.

“We are fast learners and we are fast at fixing things,” said Greg “Joz” Joswiak, an Apple vice president who oversees product marketing for iPhones and related services. “We learned the maps business incredibly fast.”

To deliver up-to-date information, Apple gets data from more than 3,000 sources for business listings, traffic, and other information. To add transit information, Apple has sent out teams to map out subway entrances and signs, possibly for more precise walking directions. Oh, and let’s not forget about those vehicles that have been mapping roads.

Technology enthusiast, rocker, biker and writer of Follow me on Twitter or contact me via email:

  • Mario Gaucher

    I don’t know elsewhere in Canada… but near my home in Montreal, Apple Maps traffic updates are not working very well. Yesterday, there was a big traffic jam from 3 to at least 6 pm near my home… something unusual for a 5 minutes drive that was more than 30 minutes with the traffic jam. Apple Maps “pushed” me directly in the jam… when I saw this, I opened Google Maps and it redirected me away from the jam. Anyone else has the same experience with Apple Maps?

  • Z S

    I imagine it’s because a lot of users just use the stock Maps app rather than download Google Maps. I have both and use each one depending on the situation.

    For 95% of situations, Apple Maps works just peachy here in St. John’s. It’s smoother and Siri has better pronunciation of local street names I’ve found.

    But Google traffic, especially in areas like NL where it’s crowdsourced rather from official traffic sensors, is more accurate. And if a street is new or changed, it can be published rapidly via Mapmaker… whereas Apple Maps might be a couple months behind.

  • Tim

    Apple maps continues to remain three swipes away in my junk folder.

  • Etdashou

    We all know it’s because Apple Maps is good. It is not because Apple offer no way to change our default map app. If Apple will offer a way to change the default, we all know those stats will stay the same. Apple are so good.


  • Matric

    Its more used because it comes on the phone and people are too dumb or lazy to change it, also google maps cant be added as the default app.

  • Aleks Oniszczak

    If Apple is so confident about how great its Maps app is, then why does it not allow users to set another map app as default? Of course their Maps app will be “popular” if address links are forced to open with Apple’s Maps app.

  • Michal

    just because apple can fudge the numbers and shove their map down our collective throats doesnt mean it’s good. 🙂

    google maps >>>>>>> apple

  • definingsound

    Google maps screwed me recently, sending me into the CNE grounds to bypass all the traffic on Lakeshore. The CNE was closed to traffic, only allowing parking. Other times Apple maps has screwed me. None of the mapping apps are 100% accurate 100% of the time, in a city as dynamic as Toronto or Montreal. Both Apple and Google maps seem to have finally figured out how to deal with Gardiner/Lakeshore, they both used to have problems figuring out which of the two roads I was on (they are stacked on top of each other).

    Personally, my go-to is Waze for car directions, and Google Maps for biking directions.

  • Mario Gaucher

    for me, Waze is not very good for my daily commute… I know all the roads for my way back home… but GPS/mapping apps are very useful to shave a lot of driving time… Google has been the best so far… waze is often pushing me into the traffic and giving me alternatives a little bit too late (so ending up stuck in the traffic). I’m trying Apple Maps for a few days to see how it works… but I think I will be back to Google Maps soon.

  • FragilityG4

    Sorry folks, here in the GTA Apple Maps are far more reliable than Google. I use it everyday.

  • Google Maps still preferred app out west in BC