Google is finally adding a speedometer to Google Maps on iPhone

Posted:
in iOS

Half a decade after it introduced the features on Android, Google now plans to add both a speedometer and speed limits detail to its Google Maps on iOS.

Smartphone displaying a GPS navigation map with a blue route, road names, and various icons including search, audio, and microphone.
Google Maps on iPhone will add a speedometer



Taking an accurate measurement of a car's speed is surprisingly hard, but the vehicle's own speedometer is always going to be more accurate than a mapping app. Plus the iPhone already has speed limit warnings in Apple Maps.

Nonetheless, Google is planning to roll out the feature to Google Maps globally. As spotted by TechCrunch, the company is currently testing the feature in India. Google has subsequently confirmed that the speedometer will be available to all users on iPhone, though it did not give a timescale.

Google's current support page only mentions Android. It also, though, stresses that the speedometer figure is "for informational use only."

"Make sure to use your vehicle's speedometer to confirm your actual driving speed," it continues.

All of which makes this sound pretty pointless, but possibly the key word is pretty. For unlike a regular speedometer, the one displayed on a Google Maps screen will reportedly change color if the driver goes over the speed limit.

While the speedometer is seemingly intended to roll out worldwide, the seemingly more useful speed limits feature may not, however. Google's support page for Android refers to options "if the speed limits feature is available in your location."

It seems unlikely that Google would bring speed limits to all iPhone users before bringing it to all Android ones. For its part, Apple introduced the speed limit feature to Apple Maps in 2020, and has since been rolling it out to more countries.



Read on AppleInsider

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 19
    bleepobleepo Posts: 3member
    Apple Maps does not have speed limit warnings. It has speed check camera warnings. 
    williamlondongatorguy
  • Reply 2 of 19
    ddawson100ddawson100 Posts: 524member
    I get that it's an obvious feature to add since they can do it, it might be helpful for a full HUD, etc. but I'm going to immediately hide that. I think the use cases for calculating this by bouncing signals off satellites are pretty slim and they're not going to be instant such as any measurements based on the wheels in the car. Right now I run with a GPS watch and it drives me crazy when the instant speed read constantly (every few seconds) recalculates and the speed jumps all over the place if if satellites are obscured by buildings or even trees. It shows as too slow if it can't reach a satellite then compensates and suddenly gets way too fast when it reconnects and discovers I'm further down the course than expected. This just seems like an unnecessary and potentially very risky distraction.
    williamlondon
  • Reply 3 of 19
    swat671swat671 Posts: 152member
    What makes it so hard to calculate speed?
    williamlondon
  • Reply 4 of 19
    At 30mph (13.4m/s) the current GPS error should be such that it’s more accurate than a car’s speedo which is affected by simple things like tyre pressure and is normally set too low to protect the manufacturer with various country laws whereby a speedometer cannot read high, only low. 

    Yes, at running speed, you’re not travelling fast enough so you’ll get errors, but there’s a reason that when doing speed tests, they use GPS systems. 
    williamlondonHi.Jack
  • Reply 5 of 19
    RDWRDW Posts: 3member
    OK, unless I read this wrong, I already have the speed limit on my iPhone when using Google Maps in CarPlay.
    williamlondon
  • Reply 6 of 19
    ddawson100ddawson100 Posts: 524member
    h.dasmith said:
    At 30mph (13.4m/s) the current GPS error should be such that it’s more accurate than a car’s speedo which is affected by simple things like tyre pressure and is normally set too low to protect the manufacturer with various country laws whereby a speedometer cannot read high, only low.

    Yes, at running speed, you’re not travelling fast enough so you’ll get errors, but there’s a reason that when doing speed tests, they use GPS systems. 
    Best would be to have both, with GPS calibrating your built-in sensors as some luxury cars have introduced. Doing speed tests in a controlled environment certainly won't reflect real-world miles with well-known limits with GPS-based calculations due to vehicular, geographic, weather, or any other kind of cover.

    I probably shouldn't have used the running watch example because that has to do with smoothing, rate of samples, and other factors in the calculations. My point there was that the factors and the challenges are evident at any speed. Google says "Important: Speedometers shown in the Google Maps app are for informational use only. Make sure to use your vehicles's speedometer to confirm your actual driving speed."
  • Reply 7 of 19
    entropysentropys Posts: 4,221member
    bleepo said:
    Apple Maps does not have speed limit warnings. It has speed check camera warnings. 
    Umm, pretty sure in the land of Aus it does when following a route.  
  • Reply 8 of 19
    macxpressmacxpress Posts: 5,869member
    bleepo said:
    Apple Maps does not have speed limit warnings. It has speed check camera warnings. 
    It doesn't have speed limit warnings, however it does tell you the speed limit of the roads you're driving on. Honestly I don't want it to tell me when I'm speeding. Here in Orlando, FL if you're not going over the speed limit you're getting ran over and are just in the way. Speed limits are just a suggestion around here. 
    ForumPost
  • Reply 9 of 19
    mpantonempantone Posts: 2,104member
    swat671 said:
    What makes it so hard to calculate speed?
    Nothing.

    As Engadget points out, Waze (owned by Google since 2013) gained the speedometer function in 2016. 

    https://www.engadget.com/google-maps-speedometer-finally-comes-to-ios-and-carplay-185946210.html

    And the article notes that the Google Maps app for Android got the speedometer five years ago.
    grandact73ForumPost
  • Reply 10 of 19
    MacProMacPro Posts: 19,784member
    Off topic a wee bit... but it would be neat if my car's adaptive cruise control could auto adjust to the speed limit when asked.  There are roads across central Florida where the posted speed changes every hundred yards and the area is famous for speed traps!
    tokyojimuForumPost
  • Reply 11 of 19
    MacPro said:
    Off topic a wee bit... but it would be neat if my car's adaptive cruise control could auto adjust to the speed limit when asked.  There are roads across central Florida where the posted speed changes every hundred yards and the area is famous for speed traps!
    Not entirely what you are asking for but several cars use built-in cameras to read speed limit signs and adjust the cruise control accordingly. The ones I’ve seen allow the operator to set how much above (or below?) the posted limit they would like to drive at and the cruise will change as the speed limit does. 
    appleinsideruserForumPost
  • Reply 12 of 19
    AppleZuluAppleZulu Posts: 2,090member
    Apple Maps displays the posted speed limit on the screen, and other than a few exceptions where data for a given road hasn't been properly updated, I've found that information is quite accurate, to the point that the display will change on the screen just as you pass a road sign that displays a changed speed limit. 
    entropysForumPost
  • Reply 13 of 19
    MacPro said:
    Off topic a wee bit... but it would be neat if my car's adaptive cruise control could auto adjust to the speed limit when asked.  There are roads across central Florida where the posted speed changes every hundred yards and the area is famous for speed traps!
    My Audi does this (albeit based on internal maps and/or front camera, not Google).
    edited July 10 ddawson100ForumPost
  • Reply 14 of 19
    Apple Maps knows how fast you’re going, but doesn’t display it. 

    Try driving past a speed camera. As you approach it tells you about it once. As you get nearer, if you’re speeding, it tells you again and adds please watch your speed.
    ForumPostbaconstang
  • Reply 15 of 19
    bulk001bulk001 Posts: 771member
    Used the Speed Limit today. A passenger checked the speed as I was driving and it is pretty spot on. And of course they have a disclaimer because there is some obscure example out there that you will all  breathlessly rush to print when it is inaccurate: “man riding in Himalayas dies going one mile faster than Google maps said” type headlines on every Apple site. Not sure why one needs the feature as the driver should be watching the speedometer but a god send for backseat drivers! 
  • Reply 16 of 19
    somebody please explain to me why there a need to put a speedometer or a speed limit warning in Google maps at all. I have my current speed displayed on my dashboard at all times. Why would I look down at the map app to see how fast I'm going. As well, what use would I have for a speed limit warning? I can see the speed limit signs at the side of the road and I can see from my dashboard, that I'm over the limit. All of this innovation becomes useless when you decide to stay at the same speed as the traffic flow. In my years of driving, the number of people driving above the limit is uncountable. If drivers can see the limit signs and consciously drive over the limit,what use is an app telling them the same information. In any case, taking your eyes off the road to look at a tiny symbol on a phone is dangerous. Just keep your eyes on the dashboard, it's directly in line with the road and has bigger numbers or displays.
  • Reply 17 of 19
    somebody please explain to me why there a need to put a speedometer or a speed limit warning in Google maps at all. I have my current speed displayed on my dashboard at all times. Why would I look down at the map app to see how fast I'm going. As well, what use would I have for a speed limit warning? I can see the speed limit signs at the side of the road and I can see from my dashboard, that I'm over the limit. All of this innovation becomes useless when you decide to stay at the same speed as the traffic flow. In my years of driving, the number of people driving above the limit is uncountable. If drivers can see the limit signs and consciously drive over the limit,what use is an app telling them the same information. In any case, taking your eyes off the road to look at a tiny symbol on a phone is dangerous. Just keep your eyes on the dashboard, it's directly in line with the road and has bigger numbers or displays.
    Indeed, it seems Apple agrees: July 10, 2024 10:29PM, no display of speed, yet it uses the knowledge of your speed intelligently. That's Apple Intelligence 🤣
  • Reply 18 of 19
    mpantonempantone Posts: 2,104member
    somebody please explain to me why there a need to put a speedometer or a speed limit warning in Google maps at all. I have my current speed displayed on my dashboard at all times.
    There are usage cases that do not allow you to view the speedometer.

    Trains, boats, buses, and bicycles are some very common examples. Maybe you have never used any of those modes of transportation however I assure you that they are used widely through this planet.
    edited July 11 baconstang
  • Reply 19 of 19
    baconstangbaconstang Posts: 1,125member
    mpantone said:
    somebody please explain to me why there a need to put a speedometer or a speed limit warning in Google maps at all. I have my current speed displayed on my dashboard at all times.
    There are usage cases that do not allow you to view the speedometer.

    Trains, boats, buses, and bicycles are some very common examples. Maybe you have never used any of those modes of transportation however I assure you that they are used widely through this planet.
    For a couple of bucks, I added a GPS speedo to my iPhone.   I was curious how fast the Larkspur ferry was going, and it comes in handy for checking your car's speedo.
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