Is Google Maps Available for Apple Watch?

Google pulled the maps app from the App Store...for now

Picture of Google Maps on an Apple Watch
Google

Google Maps is arguably one of the most useful navigation apps available, and while you used to be able to run it on nearly any platform, Google dropped support for the Apple Watch in early 2017.

With Google Maps for the Apple Watch, you could quickly access routes to saved locations like your office or home, or pull up directions to any locations you recently navigated to from your phone. It made navigation, particularly by foot, even easier than it is through the iPhone app.

It's unknown right now when Google will let Apple Watch users download Google Maps again, but in the meantime, there are alternatives you can use in place of Google Maps.

When Google Maps Came to the Apple Watch

Google Maps used to work only on computers, tablets, and smartphones, until September 2015, when Google announced the Apple Watch version of the maps app.

The app was, of course, completely redesigned to fit on a watch screen, but it still offered an extremely easy way to quickly find directions without pulling out your phone.

Why Google Dropped Support for Apple Watch

It's unclear why Google quit supporting Apple Watch for their maps app, but some theories are that there was too small of a user base to keep it running and that Google wanted to redesign the app from the ground up.

However, what is clear is that they expect to return the app to the Apple Watch some time in the future.

Google Maps Alternatives for Apple Watch

Apple Maps is the free navigation app from Apple that's available for Apple Watch, iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch.

Unlike how Google Maps used to work on Apple Watch, Apple Maps lets you see an actual map, albeit a very tiny one, so that you can browse the streets much like you would on your phone.

You can trigger Apple Maps on your smartwatch by opening the app icon or by tapping an address from a message, like a text or email. Another way is to talk into your watch to start a new search.

If you're using Apple Maps while walking, the watch can vibrate a specific way to alert you which direction to turn. This is really handy so that you don't have to glance down at your wrist each time you need to change directions.

Citymapper is another Google Maps replacement for Apple Watch that provides public transport information and Uber integration. However, it doesn't work is as many cities as Google Maps or Apple Maps.