Apple Maps isn’t that bad but is is missing one very important feature for metropolitan dwellers. Public transit directions. The very public problems with Maps brought public attention to a very good public transit app for the iPhone.
Free Public Transit
Public transit isn’t free, but HopStop Transit Directions for iPhone is free. Mostly.
During the gap when Apple Maps was the only maps game in town on iOS 6, and before Google Maps hit the App Store, I looked for something to fill the transit void.
HopStop does it. For free. At least, it’s free to get started. HopStop does detailed subway, train, bus, walking and biking, and taxi directions.
That includes station finder and official transit maps and schedules for dozens of cities in the U.S., Europe, and Canada.
HopStop pulls in addresses from Contacts on iPhone. Even wheelchair accessible and stroller friendly routes are available.
Now, get this. HopStop lets you save searches in MyTrips, gives multiple possible routes using the Smart Route feature, and more.
As with any decent iPhone maps app, HopStop gives you directions to a specific location from your current location.
The transit maps remain viewable even when there’s no cell phone or Wi-Fi signal.
Did I mention free? HopStop is free and ad supported so you’ll be nagged and visually gagged with a few ads here and there.
However, you can upgrade to an ad free version. And, for New Yorkers who are used to paying more, there’s optional (99-cents) maps for MTA in Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, the Bronx, and Staten Island.
There are limits to HopStop, though. It has transit information for well over 100 metro cities so far, so be sure to check the list. Even then, HopStop starts off free, so it’s worth a download if you really miss having transit data on an iPhone map.