Waze and Google Maps are the two most popular navigational services in the world. Both have been here for over ten years, and both are owned and operated by Google. For Google, it doesn’t matter who wins, but for everyday users, it is essential to know which app is better. To find the ultimate navigational service, we are going to explore Waze vs Google Maps. We will compare different sections and see which one performs better. The winner of each round will earn a point.
At last, we will also see which one is for you. So, are you ready? Let’s dive in.
Table of contents
- Voice navigation.
- Transit options.
- Offline navigation.
- Other features.
- Which one is better where?
- Final score.
Waze vs Google Maps
To fully understand how both calculate the route, I took 10 kilometres (6.2 Miles) of a test drive. The algorithm and methods both services use are different. Take a look at the below results table from the test drive.
|Service||ETA on start||ETA on end||Dist. on start||Dist. on end||No. of reroutes|
|Waze||16:29||16:35||9.9 km||9.8 km||1|
|Google Maps||16:28||16:35||10 km||9.8 km||2|
I took the test drive at one of the busiest times and roads. Both maps performed well, but the estimated time of arrival was not accurate.
Waze uses historical data, data provided by the user, and the data provided by the app to calculate the real-time data. Google Maps also uses different metrics such as data from Android devices, data provided by users, and the app to calculate real-time traffic. In my experience, Google Maps is more accurate than Waze.
Score: Waze: 0 | Google Maps: 1. Reviews: Heavy traffic can manipulate both, but the traffic in Google Maps is something top class.
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Waze supports about 75 voices, including English, Italiano, Magyar, etc. You can also record your voice for many turns. Google Maps supports about 55 voices, including English, Filipino, Italiano etc.
One of the core functionalities of Waze is the reporting feature. Although Google Maps has started implementing the same tools, it’s not quite there yet. Take a look at the below table for all the reporting tools. Some may not be available in some locations.
|Static speed camera||✔️||❌|
|Mobile speed camera||User-provided||User-provided|
|Object on road||User-provided||User-provided|
Check out: Waze vs HERE WeGo.
Well, there is no comparison regarding the transport options. Check out the below Waze vs Google Maps transit options comparison table.
Google Maps supports offline navigation, while Waze does not. You can download an area of approx, 70 kilometres while you can download as many locations as you want. The option to use the maps offline is available. The app updates the maps after a specific time.
Score: Waze: 2 | Google Maps: 3. Reviews: Google Maps again a score.
Check out: HERE WeGo vs Waze.
Regarding businesses information, Google Maps is the king. With Google Maps, you can see information such as business hours, phone number, website, reviews, pictures etc. Waze shows the data, including phone number and the website.
Both allow users to contribute. Waze uses a scoreboard and level system, while Google Maps uses points and levels system. In Waze, a user can earn points and respect by reporting the information. The users can also increase their reputation by editing the maps on the website.
Google Maps does not offer anything for reporting any traffic-related data. But, you can help the community by adding information regarding the places you visit. Like achievements in Waze, Google Maps uses “badges”. As you go, you earn points and after specific points, your level increases. Google organises different events around the world and depending on the badge level; users get rewards and free invitations.
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Here, we add some more information regarding both. This round does not affect the score.
- Google Maps offers a street view feature in many nations.
- Both allow sharing your journey with your friends.
- You can see lanes while you travel in Google Maps.
- Google Maps creates a timeline of the places you visit.
Which one is better where?
The answer to this question is tricky. I have been using both services for a long time, and the below list is from my experience.
- For ride-share or taxi, Waze is better, because of it’s reporting features.
- For a personal car, both work fine.
- For public transport, bicycle, walk etc., Google Maps is there.
- Are you visiting the town and stuff? Google Maps will give you what’s around.
The final score of Waze vs Google Maps is 2|4. Google Maps won the fight with the lead of 2 points. Google Maps may not be rich regarding the reporting tools, but its all-rounding nature gives it an edge over the other maps services out there.
When it comes to a giant tech company, it can be assured that the services are updated regularly. Waze and Google Maps have come a long way, and they have a lot to offer. I hope the post Waze vs Google Maps helped. Thanks for having a read, and let me know what do you think about both in the comments section.
Image information: Images used on this page are screenshots of the apps. Some images are under Creative Commons and Attribution-ShareAlike 1.0 Generic (CC BY-SA 1.0).
The post was last edited by Madhsudhan on 03/Nov/2019.