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Apple Quietly Improves Its Maps iOS App

Apple isn't at CES 2019, but it's not taking the week off. The company has pushed out a new cluster of updates for its Maps app on iOS devices, both adding and augmenting features.

Credit: Apple

(Image credit: Apple)

Apple is aware of how poorly its mapping app stacks up to its rivals, and as part of the company's general plan of refining existing software, Apple Maps needed big updates to stay competitive. So Apple has cherry-picked the best parts of Waze and Google Maps to try to get on a level playing field with them at last.

MacRumors yesterday (Jan. 8) spotted a series of unannounced updates on Apple Maps’s features availability list. The most interesting part of the update is a batch of new locations for Flyover, the Apple Maps feature that lets you admire landscape and architecture in 3D. Several new towns and cities from around the world now have been captured for examination on iPhones and iPads.

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From the USA, there's Albuquerque, Charleston, Cincinnati, Greensboro, Key West, and Toledo, as well as Joshua Tree National Park and Lake Tahoe (CA). In the U.K., there’s only been one addition: Preston, a city in the North West of England.

As for exciting international destinations, there's a host of new cities in France, Italy, Spain and Japan, as well as the Principality of Monaco, which is great for people who want to trace the Grand Prix circuit or explore the world's second-smallest country.

Indoor maps are also expanded significantly. Several shopping malls and indoor shopping areas have been added, with the full list available on Apple's website (page linked above).

Canada has joined a very exclusive club in the recent update: built-in speed limits. This was previously a feature only in the U.S. and the U.K.

The states of Louisiana and Minnesota have now gained transit information for their whole area. Previously, only the cities of New Orleans and Minneapolis were covered.