For several years now, Apple has been developing indoor location and mapping, and the company is now finally beginning to share the fruits of their labor in Maps for iOS 11.

On Monday, among the array of announcements at Apple’s developer conference, the company showed off an updated Apple Maps that includes indoor location for shopping malls and airports.  For shopping malls, Apple Maps will show:

  • floor plans and individual store information.
  • directories of stores.
  • ability to search and browse.

Indoor location for shopping malls will first launch in Boston, Chicago, Hong Kong, San Francisco, Tokyo, San Jose, Philadelphia, New York, Washington DC, London and Los Angeles.  According to Apple, there would be “hundreds more per month thereafter.”  It doesn’t appear to include indoor navigation though.

The above image is a before and after set of screens.  It provides an illustration of the level of detail in the iOS 11 version of Apple Maps.  This type of maps has been available for a few years by Google, and Bing Maps also selected indoor locations.

The following screens are from the current version of Google Maps for the same mall location, which is located in Valley Fair, San Jose, California.

Below is a graphic that shows the airports where Apple will be launching indoor maps when iOS 11 becomes available this fall. (It’s possible to download the beta right now.)

Speed limit icons and stronger lane guidance has been added to navigation by Apple as well.

Apple has even created a Do Not Disturb While Driving function, which will block any and all notifications while users are driving and actually blacks out the phone screen.  There’s an auto-response that tells others that the user is driving.  Even then, there is a feature that overrides for passengers or urgent messages.

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