12 best Google Maps alternatives in 2023

google-maps-alternatives

Make no mistake: Google knows a lot about you. The tech giant collects data ranging from your search history to everything you ask your voice assistant. In fact, it will only refrain from doing so after a series of complicated steps.

Google Maps is no exception. When using the app, precautions such as deleting your location history or accessing in incognito mode can only go so far. Plus, there’s no guarantee that Google won’t save your data on its servers.

It may be easy and convenient to rely on Google’s services and products all the time. However, if you’re interested in keeping your options open to other privacy-oriented services, we’ve curated a list of privacy-oriented and open-source alternatives to Google Maps.

Apple Maps 

Apple_Maps_logo.svg

  
PriceFree
Level of privacy offered Collects data only if a user submits information through Ratings & Photos or reports an issue
Open source No
Offline maps No
Supported devicesApple devices only

 

Download Apple Maps:

Developed by Apple, Apple Maps is the default navigational system for devices the iPhone, MacBook, and Apple Watch. The app provides directions and estimated times of arrival for public transportation, driving, and walking. The app also provides real-time traffic updates. 

Why Apple Maps might be better than Google Maps

In recent years, privacy has been at the forefront of Apple’s innovations. This extends to Maps as well. All data collected by Maps is encrypted and stored in secure servers. Additionally, Apple has implemented a number of privacy controls that allow users to control the data that is collected and share through Maps. For example, users can choose to turn off location tracking or opt out of sharing their location data with third parties. 

Overall, Apple Maps is generally considered to be a reliable and secure mapping service.

Bing Maps 

Bing_logo_(2016).svg

  
PriceFree and paid versions available
Level of privacy offered User data is encrypted 
Open source Yes
Offline maps Yes
Supported devicesApple, Android, and Microsoft devices

 

Download Bing Maps:

Bing Maps is a web mapping service by Microsoft. The service also has an API that allows developers to integrate Bing Maps into their applications. Bing Maps provides a range of features like street maps, aerial and bird’s eye views, and 3D maps. It also provides real-time traffic and local search functionality.

Why Bing Maps might be better than Google Maps

Microsoft uses encryption tools to protect user data in transit and at rest. The company also implements strict access controls to limit data to authorized users. Microsoft is also generally transparent about the data it collects, and users can view and control their data through the Microsoft Privacy Dashboard. 

One thing to note is that Bing Maps is used as part of other Microsoft services, such as Office, Outlook, Dynamics 365, and more, so those services’ privacy policies might affect how data on Bing Maps might be used.

CityMapper

Citymapper_logo

  
PriceYes
Level of privacy offered CityMapper doesn’t sell or share user data to third-party advertisers
Open source Yes
Offline maps Yes
Supported devicesApple and Android devices

 

Download CityMapper:

CityMapper is a public transport and navigation app available for mobile devices. It offers a variety of features including real-time transport information, route planning, and the ability to purchase tickets. 

Why CityMapper might be better than Google Maps

CityMapper has a detailed privacy policy on its site stating that they don’t share or sell user data to third-party advertisers.

Here WeGo 

HERE_logo.svg

  
PriceYes
Level of privacy offered Here WeGo does not share data with third parties
Open source No
Offline maps Yes
Supported devicesApple and Android devices

 

Download Here WeGo:

Here WeGo is a web mapping and location-based service developed by Here Technologies and initially developed by Nokia. The app provides a range of features, including turn-by-turn navigation, real-time traffic updates, public transportation information, and the ability to search for points of interest. 

Why Here WeGo might be better than Google Maps

Here WeGo is available on various platforms, including the web, iOS, and Android. Like CityMapper, Here WeGo also states that it doesn’t sell or share user data with third parties. However, like all the other apps above, Here WeGo uses location data, which can include sensitive information and reveal daily habits and personal routines.

Maps.Me

  
PriceYes
Level of privacy offered Maps.Me might share data with advertisers
Open source Yes
Offline maps Yes
Supported devicesApple and Android devices

 

Download Maps.Me

Maps.me is a free, open-source app that automatically stores all the map information you need for offline use.

Why Maps.Me might be better than Google Maps

The app includes categories of ‘points of interest,’ comparable to Google Maps, which includes food, shops, entertainment, and other attractions. The similarity with Google Maps doesn’t end there; you will also see “Guides”, or reviews that are written by people who have visited the establishment before.

However, one disappointing drawback with Maps.Me, is that it uses your location data to serve you tailored ads on both Apple and Android versions of its app, as outlined in its privacy policy. It is a popular alternative for its features and free software, but that comes at the cost of location-based ads. For the sake of deGoogling yourself, Maps.me might be sufficient, but not if you don’t want your information used to tailor ads to you.

MapQuest 

1920px-Mapquest_logo_(since_2010).svg

  
PriceFree
Level of privacy offered Might share information with third-parties
Open source Yes
Offline maps No
Supported devicesApple devices, Android devices, and desktop. 

 

Download MapQuest:

MapQuest is a mapping and navigation app and site that provides detailed maps for driving, walking, real-time traffic, and information about local businesses. The service is available only in the U.S. 

Why MapQuest might be better than Google Maps

According to its privacy policy, MapQuest may collect personal information from and about its users, such as names, addresses, and contact details. Their privacy policy also states that they might share aggregated information with their subsidiaries and affiliates.

Ultimately, it might be wise to read MapQuest’s privacy policy before deciding if they’re worth the download.

Navmii

  
PriceYes
Level of privacy offered Might share information with third-parties
Open source Yes
Offline maps Yes
Supported devicesApple and Android devices

 

Download Navmii:

Navmii is a free community-based navigation system made especially for drivers. The service offers voice-guided navigation and live traffic information. The app can also serve as a dashcam. Navmii also has specific features for track drivers that gives information when particular routes are not suitable for their vehicle.

Why Navmii might be better than Google Maps

Navmii collects information about their users based on their privacy policy to provide better advertising experiences and communicate with them. Like MapQuest, it might be worth looking at Navmii’s privacy policy to decide if the service is worth signing up for.

OpenStreetMap 

Openstreetmap_logo.svg

  
PriceYes
Level of privacy offered May share user data with third parties
Open source Yes
Offline maps Yes
Supported devicesDesktop

 

OpenStreetMap is an open-source and community-driven navigational and mapping system available solely on desktops.

The service is maintained by a community of volunteers, with contributors from different chapters worldwide collecting and updating information for better mapping. While OpenStreetMap is helpful, it’s not always accurate and might not have the names of every street in a city. 

Why OpenStreetMap might be better than Google Maps

OpenStreetMap’s privacy policy details all the types of information and data that the platform collects about users and how users can control their data usage.

OsmAnd

OSMAnd_Logo_2017

  
PriceFree and paid versions available
Level of privacy offered OsmAnd doesn’t share collected data with third parties.
Open source Yes
Offline maps Yes
Supported devicesApple and Android devices

 

Download OsmAnd:

OsmAnd is a mobile-only navigation tool that provides traffic information, public transport details, and cycling routes for commuters and travelers alike. Users can view information like hours of operation for shops and restaurants. It’s also possible to create and store your routes on its app.

Why OsmAnd might be better than Google Maps

Both iOS and Android apps are free to use and accessible offline. However, you will have to cough up cash if you’re interested in the full library of features, which includes live map updates and unlimited map downloads.

Rand McNally 

Rand_McNally_logo.svg

  
Price199.99 USD for a Vehicle Link Electronic Logging Device
Level of privacy offered Rand McNally states it does not share information with third parties unless it’s consented to
Open source No
Offline maps Yes
Supported devicesApple and Android devices as well as Rand McNally devices

 

Rand McNally is a company that creates maps, atlases, and other cartographic products. The company is best known for its GPs devices, which are popular among truckers and travelers. It also produces different types of physical maps and travel guides. 

Why Rand McNally might be better than Google Maps

Rand McNally generally collects and uses personal information following its privacy policy. It may collect information such as location, device type, and IP address, which it uses to provide location-based services and improve and personalize its products. The company does not share personal information with third parties for its marketing purposes without user consent. Still, data may be shared with third parties who perform services on behalf of the company.

Sygic GPS Navigation 

Sygic_logo

  
PriceFree
Level of privacy offered May share your data with third parties 
Open source Yes
Offline maps Yes
Supported devicesApple and Android devices

 

Download Sygic GPS Navigation:

Sygic GPS Navigation is a GPS navigation app for smartphones and tablets. It provides turn-by-turn navigation, real-time traffic and speed camera alerts, and a wide range of detailed maps. The app also includes 3D buildings, a junction view, and a heads-up display mode that projects navigation information onto the car’s windshield.

Why Sygic GPS Navigation might be better than Google Maps

The Sygic GPS Navigation app may collect information about your device, location, usage, and preferences to provide and improve the service, personalization, and marketing purposes. The company’s privacy policy states that personal information may be shared with third-party service providers to provide the service or to improve it. However, Sygic says it will not share or sell personal information to third parties for its marketing purposes without user consent.

Waze

Logo_for_waze.svg

  
PriceFree
Level of privacy offered Waze doesn’t share data with third parties unless consented to
Open source No
Offline maps No
Supported devicesApple and Android devices

 

Download Waze:

Waze is a GPS navigation software app owned by Google that works on smartphones and tablets with GPS support. It provides turn-by-turn navigation information, user-submitted travel times, and route details while downloading location-dependent information over a mobile telephone network. Waze also allows users to report events such as accidents, speed cameras, and police presence, which other users in the area can see in near real-time.

Why Waze might be better than Google Maps

As for the safety of user data, Waze collects information from users, such as their location, speed, and chosen route, which is then shared with other users in the area. Waze states in its privacy policy that it does not share personal information with third parties without user consent and uses anonymized data to improve its service. Google, as the parent company, may also collect location data. Users are encouraged to review Waze’s Privacy Policy and Google’s Privacy Policy if they have concerns.

Google Maps API Alternatives 

Many other services offer their APIs for use. If you’re considering Google Maps API alternatives, here are some we recommend:

  • ArcGIS REST API

The ArcGIS REST API lets you access maps features, imagery, and analysis services on ArcGIS online.

  • Salesforce Maps

Salesforce’s API provides location intelligence, optimization, and visualization services for businesses. The Salesforce API might be more suitable for businesses.

  • QGIS

QGIS API runs on several major operating software, making it easy to use and adapt. With QGIS, you can browse and create map data on your computer and create content in various database formats.

  • MapInfo Pro

MapInfo Pro is a premium desktop mapping tool for creating and analyzing geographic data. A subscription starts at 1,315 USD, and a 30-day free trial is available.

  • Mapbox

Mapbox’s free API lets users access functions for maps, markers, and geographic and geometric utilities. There are also tutorials on the Mapbox site that developers may find helpful.

  • Azure Maps

Azure Maps is a service offered by Microsoft. The premium service includes geospatial services, location insights, and imagery businesses could find useful when developing web and mobile applications.

  • Loqate – Address Capture & Verification

Loqate provides accurate location data and address verification services. Beyond mapping services, Loqate provides email, phone, and bank verification tools.

  • BatchGeo

BatchGeo creates maps with location data from spreadsheets, tables, or web pages.

About Google Earth

Google Earth is a program that renders a 3D representation of Earth based on satellite imagery. The program maps the Earth by superimposing satellite images and aerial photography onto a 3D globe, allowing users to see cities and landscapes from various angles. Google Earth also includes a Street View feature, allowing users to navigate through street-level imagery.

Google Earth is available as a desktop application and as a mobile app for Android and iOS. The desktop version offers more features, such as the ability to measure distances and areas and create custom maps. The mobile app version is more focused on exploring and navigation.

Google Earth alternatives

  • Esri ArcGIS

ArcGIS Desktop is a powerful application that allows users to create, edit, and analyze geographic data. It includes tools for data visualization, spatial analysis, and map creation. 

  • QGIS

QGIS is a free, open-source Geographic Information System (GIS) software. It provides a user-friendly way to view, edit, and analyze geographical data.

  • Maptitude

Maptitude is a commercial GIS software developed by Caliper Corporation. It is primarily used to create and edit maps, analyze spatial data, and create custom GIS solutions.

  • AutoCAD Map 3D

AutoCAD Map 3D is a software application developed by Autodesk for creating and managing GIS and computer-aided design (CAD) projects. It is part of the Autodesk AutoCAD family of products. 

  • Global Mapper

Global Mapper is a commercial GIS software package for manipulating and analyzing spatial data. The software also includes various tools for performing spatial analysis, such as terrain modeling, 3D rendering, and image rectification. In addition, Global Mapper can create and export maps and interactively digitize new features.

  • ArcGIS Earth

ArcGIS Earth is a 3D mapping and visualization application developed by Esri, a company specializing in GIS software. It allows users to explore, visualize, and analyze geospatial data, including satellite imagery, terrain, 3D buildings, and other features.

  • MapInfo Pro

MapInfo Pro is a commercial GIS software.. It is used for creating, editing, visualizing, analyzing, and disseminating geographic information. The software is known for its powerful mapping and spatial analysis tools and ability to handle large amounts of data.

  • ArcGIS Online

ArcGIS Online is a cloud-based mapping and analytics platform developed by Esri, a company specializing in GIS software. It is part of the ArcGIS platform and allows users to create, share, and use maps, apps, and other geospatial content. It provides a wide range of tools for creating, editing, and visualizing geographic data and performing spatial analysis and data management.

 

FAQ: About Google Maps alternatives

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Jamie writes about current issues concerning digital privacy and security and is known to interview leading figures in tech. He also keeps an eye on changes in government censorship and surveillance.