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Google vs. Apple: Which Maps App Should You be Using?

Google vs. Apple: Which Maps App Should You be Using?

If you’re an everyday maps user, you’ll know that this technology is crucial to your daily commute. In the past few years, technology has becoming an increasingly popular addition to the driving experience. From the ever-popular online driving courses to digital maps, technology has changed the face of driving forever.

That’s why Apple’s release of its own map app has caused such an upset. Beginning with the iOS 6, Apple phones will no longer have Google Maps but will feature Apple’s own map application. Shortly after this development, Google announced an update to its own maps to keep things competitive. This raises one important question: which map is the best?

Public Transportation

While Apple is marketing a different product, it seems that they have taken a couple of pages from Google. Apple’s map features a turn-by-turn navigation style that is identical to Google’s. The application also uses a traffic viewer to help users see faster routes and uses traffic reports to change routes that have slowed due to traffic. While all of these features are nice, they are also the standard that Google Maps has set.

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One thing that Apple lacks, however, is an option for travel by public transportation. This is a large weakness that alienates a large section of Apple’s urban audience, so why did they choose not to include it? Well, most cities offer their public transportation routes through GTFS, or General Transit Data Feed. While this service is completely free to use, it was also engineered by Google, which is likely why Apple will not be using it in their own application.

Siri

Apple should get a leg up on Google thanks to Siri, right? Siri is able to provide users with information like where to find nearby restaurants or gas stations as well as an estimated time of arrival.

While Siri has become a popular feature of Apple products, it functions very much like a normal GPS in this regard. While Siri is a solid addition to Apple’s map application, it does not do much more than any other GPS app on the market.

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Nearby Search

Both Google and Apple have a feature that allows users to look up local restaurants and businesses near them. Apple does have a particular edge in this area, though.

Apple’s search not only shows the basic results, it also includes Yelp reviews. This means that Apple users can read reviews of various restaurants before deciding to go anywhere, which is a major plus in terms of convenience.

Bird’s Eye View

The newest innovation has been for map applications to offer a bird’s eye view of a location. Google recently added what it calls “Tour Guide,” while Apple refers to its program as “3D Flyover.”

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In short, these features do virtually the same thing. They offer a view of a location from above to help in navigating the area. There is a slight performance difference in Apple’s favor, however.

Apple’s 3D Flyover offers much more intense details than Google’s Tour Guide, and the images are created in real-time without sacrificing stunning visual details.

Given Apple’s history, it is no surprise that the company has an edge here. In the past three years, Apple took over several mapping companies, two of which specialized in 3D modeling. With these new acquisitions, it is logical that they would offer a better 3D service than Google.

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Final Verdict

It is impossible to deny that Apple took a lot of the amazing features from Google Maps without really altering them at all. From turn-by-turn navigation to classic search features, Apple functions in much the same way as any traditional GPS application.

There are some differences, however, and they are worth taking note of. By not including public transportation, Apple’s map feature will likely be far less useful than Google Maps to users who live in large cities. On the flip side, there are other areas in which Apple excels.

Apple’s 3D rendering of a landscape is ideal for anybody planning any kind of road trip and offers far superior navigation compared with Google’s. For this reason, Apple wins among consumers who find themselves traveling a lot.

Each application has strengths and weaknesses, and ultimately the victor is decided by personal preference and unique user needs.

Featured photo credit: https://pixabay.com via pixabay.com

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Bethany Cleg

Photographer, Entrepreneur

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Last Updated on August 29, 2018

5 Killer Online Journal Tools That Make Journaling Easier and More Fun

5 Killer Online Journal Tools That Make Journaling Easier and More Fun

Journaling is one of the most useful personal development tools around. Not only does it help us process emotions and experiences, work through internal conflicts and improve our self-awareness, it also provides us with a way to keep a day-to-day record of our lives. Traditionally an activity limited to pen and paper, the expansion of consumer technology has enabled journaling to go digital.

Saving your journaling entries online enables you to access them from anywhere, without having to carry a notebook and pen around, and provides you with digital features, like tagging and search functions.

Here are a list of five online journaling tools you can use to bring your practice into the modern age:

1. 750words

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750 words

    750words is a free online journaling tool created by Buster Benson. The site is based on the idea of “Morning Pages”; a journaling tool Julia Cameron suggests in her creativity course The Artist’s Way. Cameron advises aspiring creatives to start each morning with three pages of stream-of-consciousness writing to clear away the mental clutter, leaving you with a clearer mind to face the day.

    750 words is the three-page digital equivalent (assuming the average person writes 250 words per page) and lets you store all your journaling online. Each morning, you’ll receive a prompt asking you to write your 750 words, and the site keeps track of various statistics associated with your entries. The site uses a Regressive Imagery Dictionary to calculate the emotional content from your posts and provides feedback on features like your mood, and most commonly used words.

    750 words is simple to set up and is ideal for anyone who finds it challenging to maintain a consistent journaling practice. The site uses a number of incentives to motivate users, including animal badges awarded to journalers who complete a certain number of days in a row, leader boards, and opt-in monthly challenges.

    2. Ohlife

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    ohlife

      Ohlife is designed to make online journaling as easy as possible. Once you’ve signed up for your free account, the website will send you an email each day asking “How did your day go?” Simply reply to the email with as much or as little detail as you like, and your response will be stored on your account, ready to view next time you log in.

      Ohlife’s appeal lies in its simplicity: no stats, no social sharing, no complicated organisational systems—the site is designed to provide you with a private, online space. Simply respond to the email each day (or skip the days you’re busy) and Ohlife will do the rest.

      3. Oneword

      oneword

        OneWord is a fun online tool that provides you with a single word as a prompt and gives you sixty seconds to write about it. The concept’s aim is to help writers learn how to flow, and the prompts range from the everyday mundane to the profound.

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        Oneword is not a private journaling tool: if you sign up, your answers will be published on the site’s daily blog, which contains a stream of users’ answers, and might be used by Oneword in the future. If you’d rather keep your answers to yourself, you can still use the tool for fun without giving out any personal details.

        4. Penzu

          Penzu is a journaling tool that allows you to store your journaling notes online. The service also offers mobile apps for iOS, Android and Blackberry, so you can journal on the go and save your notes to your account. The basic service is free, however you can upgrade to Penzu Pro and get access to additional features, including military-grade encryption and the ability to save and sync data through your mobile, for $19 per year.

          With either version of Penzu, you can insert pictures, and add tags and comments to entries, as well as search for older entries. You can set your posts to be private and viewable by you only, or share them with others.

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          5. Evernote

          Evernote isn’t a purpose-built journaling tool, however its features make it perfect for keeping your journaling notes in one safe place. With the ability to keep separate “notebooks”, tag your entries, include pictures, audio and web clipping, Evernote will appeal to journalers who want to include more formats than just text in their entries.

          Available online within a web browser, and as a stand-alone desktop app, the service also comes with a series of mobile apps covering almost every device available. These allow you to make notes on the go and sync between the mobile and browser versions of the app.

          For additional features, including text recognition and the ability to collaborate on Notebooks, you can upgrade to Evernote’s premium service, which costs $5 per month.

          Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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