Google Maps

Google Maps, the most used mobile navigation app in the world (Statista), is robust, detail-oriented, and crowd-sourced. It balances a rich feature set with easy-to-use of use and user-friendly UX, which makes its top position a no-brainer.

On startup, the app places the user’s focus on what matters, which is your current location, a search bar, and discovery options for common local assets (such as food, gas, gyms, etc.). The user can immediately take control to see what is nearby, as well as ideal routes to get just about anywhere, while maintaining standardized touch controls that most people recognize immediately, like touch to zoom, scroll, swipe forward, and backward through the app. This is needed, as Google Maps also provides comprehensive details of driving, public transportation, walking, biking, and even building internals.

Google Maps is also known for its crowd-sourced data, which drives an extensive and interconnected network—making navigation more personalized and valuable. This creates an entire ecosystem within the app, allowing for user reviews, personal lists, real-time traffic updates, and more. This crowd-sourcing, along with the almost full offline support, makes Google Maps the essential pocket tool. It is a pleasure to scroll through the app, find one’s way around, navigate, mark the world around you, and learn local updates, as the app maintains a clear wayfinding system of colors, shapes, animations, dropdowns/submenus, and so on.

Google Maps provides the same robust depth of user experience across a wide range of platforms, including smartphones, cars, and desktops, as well as various integrations through a spectrum of applications. Google Maps allows for total personalization of routes, as well as many methods of communicating navigation information to the user (offline downloads, the printing of directions, omitting various route options, etc.)

In summary, Google Maps is the best option out there for navigation. It is easy to use and caters to just about every need for the user. I often rely on Google Maps every day and have not been let down yet.

 

Works Cited:

Department, Published by Statista Research, and Feb 4. “Top U.S. Mapping Apps by Users 2018.” Statista, 4 Feb. 2021, www.statista.com/statistics/865413/most-popular-us-mapping-apps-ranked-by-audience/.