How to Change Default Maps to Google Maps on iPhone

Changing the default maps on an iPhone can be a real challenge for some users. While Apple Maps is the default mapping service on iOS devices, many people prefer the user-friendly features and accuracy of Google Maps. In this blog post, we will explore different methods that you can use to change the default maps on your iPhone to Google Maps. Whether you want to use Google Maps for driving directions, exploring new places, or getting detailed information about locations, this guide will help you make the switch.

The Challenge of Changing Default Maps on iPhone

  • Apple’s Restrictions: Apple devices come with pre-installed apps, including Apple Maps. While this is convenient, it can be challenging to change the default option.
  • User Interface: Many iOS users find Apple Maps visually appealing and may struggle to adjust to the interface of a different map app.
  • Integration with Siri: One of the primary reasons iPhone owners might want to change default maps is to improve integration with Siri voice commands.
  • Customization: Users who have customized their maps on Apple Maps may be hesitant to switch to Google Maps and lose their saved locations and settings.

Video Tutorial:

Method 1. How to Change Default Maps using Apple’s Location Settings

Changing the default maps on your iPhone is possible by adjusting the location settings. Here are the steps to accomplish this:

– Simple and straightforward method.
– Utilizes native iOS settings.

– Limited customization options.
– Does not integrate with Siri commands as effectively.

1. Open the "Settings" app on your iPhone.
2. Scroll down and tap on "Privacy."
3. Tap on "Location Services."
4. Scroll through the list of apps and locate "Apple Maps."
5. Tap on "Apple Maps" and select "Never" or "While Using the App" to limit the usage of Apple Maps.
6. Download and open the Google Maps app from the App Store.
7. Use the "Add to Siri" feature in Google Maps to set up voice commands for Siri integration.

Method 2. How to Change Default Maps using Shortcuts

Shortcuts is a powerful app developed by Apple that allows users to create custom workflows and automate tasks on their iPhones. By creating a shortcut to open Google Maps, you can bypass the default Apple Maps app. Here’s how:

– More customization options.
– Ability to automate multiple tasks.

– Requires additional setup and familiarity with the Shortcuts app.

1. Download and open the Apple Shortcuts app from the App Store.
2. Tap on "Create Shortcut."
3. Search for "Open App" in the search bar and select the action.
4. Tap on "Choose" and select "Google Maps" from the list of installed apps.
5. Tap on the ellipsis (…) icon and rename the shortcut to something meaningful like "Open Google Maps."
6. Tap on the three dots (…) to access settings for the shortcut.
7. Enable the "Show in Widget" option for quick access.
8. Tap on "Done" to save the shortcut.
9. Open the Today View on your iPhone (swipe right on the home screen).
10. Scroll down and tap on "Edit."
11. Locate the "Shortcuts" widget and tap on the green "+" icon to add it.
12. Rearrange the widgets as desired and tap on "Done" to save changes.
13. Now, you can access Google Maps quickly by swiping right on your home screen and tapping on the "Open Google Maps" shortcut.

Method 3. How to Change Default Maps using a Third-Party App

If you prefer not to rely on built-in features or shortcuts, there are third-party apps available on the App Store that allow you to change default maps without any complicated settings. Here’s one example:

– User-friendly interface.
– No complex settings or shortcuts required.

– May require a subscription or in-app purchases for additional features.

1. Download and open the "OpenMaps" app from the App Store.
2. Grant the app permission to access your location.
3. Tap on the search bar and enter your desired location or address.
4. Select "Google Maps" from the available options.
5. The app will automatically launch Google Maps with the selected location.

Method 4. How to Change Default Maps using a Web Browser

If you prefer not to download any additional apps on your iPhone, you can still use Google Maps as your default mapping service by accessing it through a web browser. Here’s how:

– No need to install any additional apps.
– Can access Google Maps directly through a browser.

– Limited functionality compared to the dedicated Google Maps app.
– Requires an internet connection to use accurately.

1. Open Safari or any other web browser on your iPhone.
2. Visit the Google Maps website (
3. Tap on the share button at the bottom of the screen (the square with an arrow pointing up).
4. Scroll through the options and tap on "Add to Home Screen."
5. Rename the shortcut to "Google Maps" and tap on "Add" to save it.
6. The Google Maps shortcut will now appear on your home screen.
7. Whenever you want to open Google Maps, tap on the shortcut icon to launch it directly from your home screen.

Alternatives: What to Do If You Can’t Change Default Maps

If you encounter any difficulties changing the default maps on your iPhone, there are alternative solutions you can consider. Here are three options:

1. Use Siri commands: Even if you can’t change the default maps, you can still use Siri to open Google Maps directly. Simply activate Siri and say "Open Google Maps," and Siri will launch the Google Maps app for you.

2. Utilize the Google Maps app manually: While it may not be as seamless as changing the default maps, you can always manually open the Google Maps app when needed. You can save locations, get directions, and explore places directly within the Google Maps app without relying on the default maps.

3. Use the "Share" feature: Whenever you encounter an address or location outside of the Apple Maps app, you can use the "Share" feature to open it directly in Google Maps. Simply tap on the "Share" button and select "Google Maps" from the available options.

Bonus Tip

1. Customize Google Maps settings: Take some time to explore the settings within Google Maps and customize them according to your preferences. You can adjust options like voice volume, map display, traffic notifications, and more to optimize your navigation experience.

2. Use Google Maps offline: Before embarking on a journey where internet access may be limited or unavailable, download offline maps in Google Maps. This way, you can still access maps and directions even without an internet connection.

3. Explore additional features: Google Maps offers a range of features beyond basic navigation, such as public transit information, local restaurant reviews, street view, and more. Take the time to explore these features and make the most of your navigation app.

5 FAQs about Changing Default Maps on iPhone

Q1: Can I completely remove Apple Maps from my iPhone?

A: No, Apple Maps is a pre-installed app on iOS devices and cannot be completely removed. However, you can limit its usage by changing the default maps as mentioned in the methods above.

Q2: Will changing the default maps affect other apps’ functionality?

A: Changing the default maps will only impact the specific applications that integrate with the map services. Other apps unrelated to mapping or navigation will remain unaffected.

Q3: Is it possible to switch back to Apple Maps?

A: Yes, if you’ve changed the default maps to Google Maps or any other app, you can always revert to Apple Maps by adjusting the settings in the Location Services of your iPhone.

Q4: Can I use multiple map apps on my iPhone?

A: Yes, you can install and use multiple map apps on your iPhone. However, only one app can be set as the default maps for Siri voice commands and other native integrations.

Q5: Will the methods mentioned work on all iPhone models?

A: Yes, the methods discussed can be applied to all iPhone models running on the latest version of iOS. However, the steps and settings may vary slightly depending on the iOS version and device model.

In Conclusion

Changing the default maps on an iPhone to Google Maps or any other preferred app is both possible and beneficial. With a few simple adjustments in the settings or the use of shortcuts and third-party apps, you can enhance your navigation experience and enjoy the features offered by your preferred mapping service. Whether you choose to customize location settings, utilize shortcuts, or explore alternative solutions, the power to change default maps and tailor your mapping experience lies in your hands.