There’s a war going on, and it’s between the Apple Maps app and Google Maps. Yesterday’s update of the Google Maps iOS app gave it the lead in the battle with the addition of a new live integration of the Popular Times feature.
Popular Times is nothing new — it’s been available since 2015, showing users the times to avoid going to popular places. It does so by taking anonymized GPS data from users to see how many people are at a particular location. The update now adds live data to the mix, showing iOS users if a place is less or more crowded than usual.
There’s also a new bit of data that shows how long people usually spend at a location, which can be helpful if you’re looking to squeeze in a quick lunch at a popular spot. Google Maps also added support for quick access to addresses that have been copied to the iOS clipboard.
I personally prefer Google Maps for iOS to Apple’s offering, as the voice search is much more accurate than Siri, offline maps are easy to create and store, and with the new live data integration for Popular Times, I’ll be able to estimate just how long I may have to wait at a particular location.