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Transit directions finally coming to Apple Maps in iOS 9, says 9to5Mac

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Bus, subway, and train routes are on the way

Apple's Maps app will add transit directions for subway, train, and bus lines in iOS 9, according to 9to5Mac. If the report is accurate, Apple will finally address a longstanding gap that resulted when the company decided to ditch Google Maps nearly three years ago. Up until now, Apple's self-built maps product hasn't offered public transit directions and has instead pointed users to third-party apps (including Google's) in the App Store. But after pushing off plans to introduce transit support in iOS 8 at the eleventh hour, 9to5Mac suggests that Apple is really ready this time, and the transit feature will be the major addition to Maps in the forthcoming operating system update. Hopefully they'll arrive on Apple Watch simultaneously, as having details about train transfers on your wrist would be pretty excellent.

In iOS 9, the Maps app will reportedly offer more than point-to-point bus, subway, and train routing; a trip planner and "Transit" map view (being added alongside Standard, Hybrid, and Satellite) are also said to be on the way. Holding things back a year may prove wise on Apple's part, with 9to5Mac claiming that the company has since "refined the data, added new cities, and developed a new push notifications system that will notify users as new cities gain support" for transit navigation. Comparisons with Google's data are inevitable, so Apple is likely working hard to avoid any obvious blunders or embarrassing errors like those that shipped in the original Maps software.

The 9to5Mac report also says that Apple is working to gather indoor mapping data — another feature Google already provides — but it sounds like this is a longer term goal that may have to wait for a later iOS version. Aside from the introduction of transit directions, iOS 9 will reportedly focus largely on stability, bug fixes, and refining the user experience of Apple's incredibly popular mobile OS.