This survey from TesTee Lab looked at iPhone mapping apps.
I’m on Android, but I’d be lost (groan) without Google Map. I’ve only tried Yahoo! Map through web sites like Facebook, but I’ve not been impressed. In Japan, Google is very bilingual-friendly (too friendly sometimes, as it sometimes searches in the wrong language) and the memory of places one has previously visited is exceptionally useful. The trains are full of adverts for NAVITIME, and it looks good and exceptionally detailed, but although it claims to be free for basic features, I worry it will be nagware, so I’ve never bothered trying. Its vehicle navigation features appear to be almost as good as dedicated car navigation systems, but as I only drive when I rent a car, and the cars come with navigation as standard, I never bother with smartphone apps.
One thing I did learn from the report was the abbreviation NPS, Net Promoter Score, which is a value indicating how much people love or hate a particular brand, etc. I’m not sure how useful the figures are in this case, so rather than report the exact numbers, I’ll just summarise the outcome (hint: people hate Apple’s stock app).
Here’s why you want to use a map app when you’re in Japan; this is just a fraction of the Tokyo area lines – the subway and all private lines are missing for a start:
Then again, I survived quite happily long before apps were ever invented; kids today, bah humbug!