Google to bring turn-by-turn navigation to the iPhone

Google launched a turn-by-turn navigation update to Google Maps yesterday in the UK. During the press conference they stated that they plan to bring the update to other smartphone devices including the iPhone.

Currently the only way to get turn-by-turn directions on the iPhone is buying an app such as TomTom which is $69.99. Google would offer their service for free. This will create some more competition in the navigation market and hopefully force the navigation creators to continue to innovate and continue to make something that users will pay for.

One of the downsides to Google Maps is that it requires an internet connection if you make any deviations from your original trip. It will pre-cache your entire trip so if you stay on course and you lose an internet connection you won't lose your progress. You will need an internet connection if you make a detour so it can recalculate.

UPDATE: A Google representative told PC World, "We did not say we would bring it to iPhone, we said to date we've had it on Android and that in the future it may come to other platforms but did not confirm this will be coming to iPhone at all." This doesn't mean that it won't come to the iPhone it just means that currently Google isn't promising that it will.

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yessssssssssssss i mean...tomtom and all the others a great but who would pay £65 for an app?! you could buy a tomtom itself for about ~£80-100! finally some competition

I paid for it. I didn't have a TomTom device before but I used their software on my old iPAQ. Like me most people don't want to carry two devices around with them so this is where the iPhone benefits.

I agree though as much as I think TomTom make great sat nav software/hardware they need some good competition. Google is just the company to scare them. Google can also offer a lot more than just navigation too.

Aquafox said,
yessssssssssssss i mean...tomtom and all the others a great but who would pay £65 for an app?! you could buy a tomtom itself for about ~£80-100! finally some competition

Well exactly. You're saving £15 when you buy the app.

"One of the downsides to Google Maps is that it requires an internet connection at all times."

Can't it cache the route if you set it while you have a connection so that you can continue on that route without the connection?

Asmodai said,
"One of the downsides to Google Maps is that it requires an internet connection at all times."

Can't it cache the route if you set it while you have a connection so that you can continue on that route without the connection?

It does cache to a point but depending on the length of your route it may not be able to cache the whole trip.

Brandon B. said,

It does cache to a point but depending on the length of your route it may not be able to cache the whole trip.

Could probably get around that issue by refreshing your route every time just before you get into a dead area.

SputnikGamer said,

Could probably get around that issue by refreshing your route every time just before you get into a dead area.

If you know your route well enough to know the deadspots, you probably don't need turn by turn navigation....!

macf13nd said,

If you know your route well enough to know the deadspots, you probably don't need turn by turn navigation....!

Well I was thinking that if you hit a dead spot you stop into a coffee shop, bookstore, or someplace else that offered free wi-fi and refresh the route that way and continue on you way. I don't have an android phone (yet) so I have no idea how it works but that would truly suck if the second you lose connection the app pops up an error message and bails on you.

Great news, but it really does make me wonder, where is the money in this? I mean Google ARE a business after all, and their primary aim is to bring in the moulah. At the minute, the app is free, the maps are free, the downloads can be quite large (costing Google bandwidth costs), and there are no ads.

Whats the catch?!

Majesticmerc said,
Whats the catch?!

Google know where people are driving and so can get a good idea of road traffic volumes for free = free research into where to place billboards? I dunno, it's all I could think of with a migraine....

Majesticmerc said,
Great news, but it really does make me wonder, where is the money in this? I mean Google ARE a business after all, and their primary aim is to bring in the moulah. At the minute, the app is free, the maps are free, the downloads can be quite large (costing Google bandwidth costs), and there are no ads.

Whats the catch?!

Its advertisement. They may not make money from the app itself but by using it you are learning to trust google products more and more. The fact that most of these services from google tie together makes google the one stop shop for all your online needs. Also if google really wanted to, they could charge companies to advertise on the map itself. Example story: User does a search on the map for a coffee shop. Top of the list is Starbucks and Barnes & Nobles. Advertisement battle starts with each company paying more to be the top on the list.

This is great if you have an unlimited data plan but for people like me who have limited data plans (and get charged like a wounded bull when you go over that limit) it's not so good, until Google add a caching map data option (like Nokia do with Ovi maps) it's just not a viable option for me.

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