SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS) — Google is out with a new and improved mapping app for both the iPad and iPhone. A previous version was removed by Apple last September prompting a barrage of criticism about Apple’s own mapping app.

The fact that Google Maps works on the iPad is new and that’s great because the iPad is a great mapping tool. I’ve always wondered why there isn’t a kit (maybe there is) to mount one on your dashboard for when you’re driving.

Apple’s own mapping app for the iPhone has improved with traffic conditions and data that they didn’t have before, including a better search function and a better ability to discover things.

Google Maps on the other hand has integrated well with the web version. Once I type in an address on my PC it also shows up on my iPhone. This sync tool comes in especially handy for when you’re driving. Google Earth is also integrated into the system.

While Apple gradually makes these improvements, they seem to be doing it sort of on the sly without big press releases or by rolling out updates. Every once in a while when I check it out I notice the improvements.

The one area where I do always use Apple’s maps is when I’m driving and I want to go to a new address. Obviously I’m not going to fumble with my phone to type something in Google Maps, so I’ll use Siri instead and hope it recognizes my voice.

Google has its own voice recognition, but it’s not well integrated into the iPhone. In fact, I highly recommend you pull over since it would be pretty treacherous to try and type in all that information while driving.

(Copyright 2013 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)


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