Google Maps Debuts New Apple Watch App and CarPlay Features


macrumors bot
Original poster
Apr 12, 2001

Google today announced the launch of several features for Google Maps on Apple products, including new CarPlay functionality and a new Google Maps app that works on Apple Watch.

The new Google Maps app for Apple Watch works similarly to the iOS app, allowing Apple Watch owners to get directions for a car, bike, public transit, or on foot.

The app supports estimated arrival times and step-by-step directions on Apple Watch when using saved destinations like Work or Home. Other destinations require navigation to start on iPhone, with the directions then picked up by Apple Watch.

For CarPlay, there's CarPlay Dashboard integration for switching or pausing songs from a media app, rewinding or fast forwarding podcasts or audiobooks, or quickly checking calendar appointments all while turn-by-turn directions remain on the CarPlay display. All info is displayed in a split screen view.

Google Maps works with CarPlay Dashboard on all CarPlay supported vehicles around the world. The Google Maps app for Apple Watch will be rolling out in the coming weeks.

Google Maps can be downloaded from the App Store for free. [Direct Link]

Article Link: Google Maps Debuts New Apple Watch App and CarPlay Features
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Reactions: jonnysods


macrumors newbie
Jun 22, 2010
What a horrible photoshop job of the CarPlay screen. I see that in the original Google article it's animated, but ... woof.

That said: I am happy to see more apps leverage the dashboard
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Reactions: javisan


macrumors regular
Dec 10, 2015
this was perfect timing for my cross-country move that happened three months ago.

In all seriousness, my fiancée will be stoked about this since she prefers google maps over apple. I'm also excited for this since google maps currently has better bicycle directions than apple, and that'll be helpful on the watch.
  • Haha
Reactions: PSeg90


macrumors regular
Jun 13, 2007
Thank you google, finally google maps is back on the Apple Watch. Apples own maps are really subpar, at least in Europe. They’re borderline useless, often wasting ones time with routes that don’t even work. I rarely use it and I wish I could change the default map app to google maps on all iDevices!!
Google maps, as sad as it is, is without competition for my use case. The maps are pretty good and the routing and traffic algorithms are amazingly accurate. Two hour trips, the expected time of arrival is usually within 5 minutes even with construction sites and traffic jams. For walking or cycling directions Apple Maps usually knows nothing but major roads, laughable!
Openstreetmaps has the most accurate maps by far here, but no good frontend/app. Too bad


macrumors member
Sep 29, 2016
Really, though, I couldn't care less. I have used Apple Maps exclusively for the last couple of years and haven't looked back.
If you don't need this it does not mean nobody either. Apple Maps still sucks in many countries.
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macrumors member
Jul 30, 2020
Chattanooga, TN
STOKED to hear this! I've been skeptical to use Apple Music or Apple Maps with my CarPlay so the dashboard has been basically useless for me. Glad to see that Google Maps can replace Apple's on the dashboard, I might actually use it now..


macrumors newbie
Mar 25, 2014
What happened? Did they get a big cheque from Apple? Or did they start losing too many users over this?


macrumors 6502a
Feb 10, 2003
Vicar of Dibley-land, UK
Apple Maps is great and my daily driver.

However POIs in the UK are still really poor, which is when I switch to Google Maps. As an example, navigating to Quarr Abbey (a monastery on the Isle of Wight, an island off the south coast of England) Apple Maps wants to take me to a pizza place in San Francisco. Now I’m sure the restaurant is very nice, just the logistics don’t quite work for me.


macrumors 6502a
Dec 9, 2005
Gainesville, Fl
That's cool. The more competition, the better and it'll help Apple Maps continue to improve (like Quark vs InDesign lol).

I have used Apple Maps for the last couple of years and haven't looked back and it worked nicely with Apple Watch.
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Reactions: Ghost31


macrumors 65816
Oct 11, 2011
I can’t wait for Waze to integrate with dashboard.
my garage doors are home kit, which means they show up in the dashboard when I get close to home, but when I’m using Waze, I get a notification on the bottom of the screen to turn into my driveway, but it covers up the garage door button. So I have to stop navigation in Waze, then switch to the dashboard. First world problem, I know.
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macrumors 68000
Jan 5, 2016
Calgary, Alberta, Canada
Excited for this. Haven’t been using dashboard because Apple maps is still pretty terrible in Canada and everyone here uses Google maps. At least I’ll finally be able to make use of the dashboard feature :).

Omega V

macrumors member
Sep 23, 2016
Las Vegas, Nevada
Google maps, as sad as it is, is without competition for my use case.
What's so sad about it?

I only use Google Maps because whenever I try to use Apple Maps (I give it a try once a month and after every major iOS software launch) it's severely lacking, at least for me here in Las Vegas, Nevada. Apple Maps doesn't even show some locations that have been around for a few years.

I also enjoy that Google Maps is far more detailed when I zoom into the map. There are areas where Google Maps will show multiple stores (for example a business park) and Apple Maps will just show the outline(s) of the area but no stores/store information...I keep trying Apple Maps but it's just not on the same level as Google Maps at least for me.

Apple Maps told me one time to drive in a huge circle (multiple right turns) but Google Maps showed that I could just drive straight through the business park. Google Maps is just far more detailed because of all the data they have and the multiple year head-start they have on Apple Maps.

I want to use Apple Maps as my primary maps app but I can't because whenever I use it and compare it to Google Maps its just not there unfortunately. Apple Maps has a cleaner layout and some cool features but Google Maps for accuracy and street view is just the best you can use right now in my mind.

This is especially true if you live outside America! When I was on vacation in Malaysia and Singapore this past November it was without a doubt Google Maps over Apple Maps and Apple Maps wasn't even close.
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one more

macrumors 68000
Aug 6, 2015
Nice, as this can hopefully encourage Apple to speed up their new maps rollout beyond the US.
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