Review: Waze Maps, an alternative to Google Maps; Is it worth it?

As said, I am a Google Maps kinda guy and loves the various features it offers but I tried Waze for a change and I must say, it is impressive with a huge dump of data available at the disposal of millions of its units that gives it an upper hand from the Google Maps app at least in some features. Here’s a detailed review on how the app looks and works so sit back and read.

The installation
Somehow, Waze doesn’t work with OnePlus smartphones even after I tried it on a OnePlus 6. I had to switch to a different smartphone just to get a good glimpse of the app rather than posting a negative response because Waze isn’t compatible with any OnePlus devices. Now, you easily download the Waze app from App Store and Google Play Store but I highly doubt that it could be available for other OS too. And yes, it is an app-only mapping service and thus, it won’t work on your computer or Macbook but that’s okay since not every app works both on smartphones and computers.

Review: Waze Maps, an alternative to Google Maps; Is it worth it?

The layout
I love how the app designed its maps with a decent color palette that don’t look too bright and won’t cause your eyes to blur out even if you see it for hours but I don’t recommend viewing maps for hours because it’s not something people usually do (jk). Further, the app is easy to use though you will have to keep the location activated as it constantly requires user’s location to traceroutes to the destination and other details. The app has a plethora of icons and symbols similar to Here Maps from Nokia and has a huge dump of data available to access remotely using a smartphone.

The features
Let’s talk about the various features that you will get to use with Waze app.

Live Traffic updates
It has become a norm for mapping services to provide live traffic updates to its users but Waze takes it a step further. It updates the drivers about the traffic ahead, the speed limits, traffic jams, police, accidents, and hazards that could create jams, and more. Since Waze allows the users to update the data on its app, it becomes more of a personalized real-time app that provides insights in the road is closed for today or if there’s something that could create jam ahead. It is like a person is driving ahead of you giving heads up about the situation ahead but the only difference is, there are millions of drivers doing the same for you.

No potholes can slow you down as you get a heads up in advanced. Further, Waze allows the user to track gas stations along with real-time gas prices which is a pretty interactive feature that works great allowing its users to fill up the gas tank by comparing the prices across various nearby gas stations.

Review: Waze Maps, an alternative to Google Maps; Is it worth it?

Community-powered map and updates
Waze is different from Google Maps because it has a community-powered map update that allows users to update about the newly opened malls, neighborhood, etc. The community is proactive in providing data in terms of traffic as well as the location, road conditions, police inspections, and much more. Since every user is the part of the community, they all can edit the maps and the information fed into the system giving a more personalized and details maps which is something Google Maps might never achieve. But since some data from Waze is used by Google Maps as well, it is quite easy that you won’t be able to distinguish the data availability and point of interests.

Download apps for offline usage
Now that’s a hard blow of Google Maps as it can’t truly download a map but Waze can do it. In fact, it can download maps of the city or even a country based on your requirements that allows you to access it offline even when the internet is inaccessible.

Conclusion
If you are looking for detailed live updates and/or offline maps availability, you must try Waze for sure but since it lacks features like street view, it could be a turn off for you. The app works smoothly in any smartphone but not on OnePlus and that’s another blow since Google Maps being an default on Android and a dominating mapping service in iOS products, would take necessary actions to prevent such errors. Google Maps has been including a plethora of features that are added almost every month which is another plus point to Google Maps while the frequency of updates for Waze could be lower. So tell us, which one would you go for in the comments below.

Download the app from App Store & Google Play Store.

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