Apple Updates App Store to Feature Third Party Map Apps

| News

Following Apple CEO Tim Cook’s letter addressing customer concerns over the company’s Maps app early Friday, Apple has updated its App Store to prominently feature mapping and GPS applications from third parties.

Third Party App Store Maps

In Mr. Cook’s letter, he pointed customers unhappy with Apple’s Maps to alternative solutions: “While we’re improving Maps, you can try alternatives by downloading map apps from the App Store like Bing, MapQuest and Waze, or use Google or Nokia maps by going to their websites and creating an icon on your home screen to their web app.”

Most of those solutions and more are now featured in the new “Maps Apps” section of the App Store.

Apple Third Party App Store Maps

Apps currently featured include:

  • MotionX GPS Drive
  • Waze Social GPS & Gas
  • MapQuest
  • GPS by TeleNav
  • Scout by Telenav
  • Garmin
  • Gokivo GPS Navigator
  • CoPilot Live Premium HD
  • CoPilot GPS
  • Bing Maps
  • Magellan RoadMate
  • AT&T Navigator

The relatively short amount of time that it took Mr. Cook to address the issue via his open letter, and Apple’s immediate follow-up to feature third party mapping applications in its App Store, indicates that the company is taking customer concerns over the quality of its service seriously.

Thanks to reader Scott for the tip!

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A class move on Cook’s part. I would have been hard put not to mention Google blocking turn-by-turn and the contract or subscription horizon. Instead he not only doesn’t slam them, he promotes them and then has a new store category created. Apple is gonna scorch.



Wow…. I have to admit, Tim Cook is handling this whole Maps snafu about as well as anyone. I just have to wonder if it will hurt Apple’s own mapping ambitions in the long run, especially if too many iOS users turn to alternatives to Apple’s map app and never come back.

Still, class act placing customer satisfaction first, especially given the runaway success of both iOS 6 and iPhone 5. (BTW, loving iOS6 on my 4S, although I can’t say I’ve used the Apple maps app much.)

To really make a dent in Apple’s maps app, how many think they need to make it web-enabled?

Lee Dronick

Can 3rd party map apps access the Address Book app?

Open the Apple Map app and click on Directions. in the start field enter the name of someone in your address book, the app will give a list of options. Chose one and the starting address fills in. It works the same with the end field.

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