Apple Maps in iOS 18: Personalised navigation on the horizon?

Should this feature materialise as implied by its name, it would enable Apple Maps users to devise their own routes for trips
The image shows Apple Maps. — Apple
The image shows Apple Maps. — Apple

A recently uncovered code snippet hints at a potential new feature for Apple Maps, allowing for custom route planning. This discovery, made within an iOS 18 file, has yet to be detailed by Apple. 

The tech giant, in anticipation of WWDC 2024 on June 10, is already gearing up, including updates to its server infrastructure. The intriguing find, a file titled "CustomRouteCreation" in the Apple Maps system, was unearthed by technology enthusiast Nicolas Alvarez and subsequently reported by the tech news outlet MacRumors.

Should this feature materialise as implied by its name, it would enable Apple Maps users to devise their own routes for trips, a significant enhancement from the current option of choosing from pre-determined routes and adding stops post-selection.

The upcoming WWDC event, running from June 10-14, is poised to showcase not only new updates for services like Apple Maps and operating systems such as iOS 18 but also Apple's advancements in artificial intelligence.

Apple Maps vs Google Maps

When choosing between Google Maps and Apple Maps on an iPhone, it's a matter of personal preference based on specific needs. Google Maps offers widespread availability across various platforms, a wealth of features for discovery and navigation, including detailed traffic updates and extensive Street View coverage. Its interface is packed with information, which can be overwhelming but useful for those who prefer detailed exploration and multiple functionalities.

Apple Maps, on the other hand, excels in user privacy and simplicity. Its interface is more streamlined, making it user-friendly. While it has improved significantly over the years in terms of navigation and features, it remains exclusive to Apple devices. For those prioritising privacy and a cleaner, more integrated user experience with iOS, Apple Maps is the better choice. 

Apple Maps street view

Street View, available since 2007 in Google Maps, offers a ground-level perspective of locations, unlike traditional top-down maps, making it easier to orient in unfamiliar areas. Although it's not available everywhere, with notable gaps in countries like Germany and South Korea, it covers many global locations. 

Apple Maps’ street view is called Look Around. It was launched in 2019 and offers similar functionality but with more limited coverage, primarily in major cities across select countries. Both services now offer similar AR direction features, but in Apple Maps vs Google Maps, the latter leads in coverage and variety of views.