(ABC News) -- Call it an early Christmas gift from Google. The long-awaited Google Maps app for Apple's iPhone is finally here.
Of course, this is not just any other app release. Ever since Apple replaced Google Maps with its own Maps app in iOS 6 and on the iPhone 5 in September, users have been yearning for Google's superior and more accurate map features.
"People around the world have been asking for Google Maps on iPhone," Daniel Graf, Director of Google Maps for Mobile, said in a blog post. "It's designed from the ground up to combine the comprehensiveness and accuracy of Google Maps with an interface that makes finding what you're looking for faster and easier."
The app brings Google's mapping service to the iPhone and the iPod Touch (no iPad-optimized app yet) via a standalone, downloadable app. iPhone users no longer have to access the service through the browser on their iPhone. The app also provides robust features, including voice guided turn-by-turn navigation, public transport directions, live traffic and street view. And, of course, Google itself highlights that the maps are "accurate" in its description in the App Store.
Google also highlights that it has worked specifically to make it a fast experience and tie in search and Zagat results. Google says it will continue to work on the app -- in fact, you can even shake the phone to provide more feedback. In our short time with the app, it seems to work swiftly. It actually seems to have smoother transitions and animations than the Android version.
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