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How to use Street View (Look Around) in Apple Maps
If the headline seems a little confusing, that’s because Google Maps’ Street View feature has become so synonymous with on-the-ground, 360-degree views that Look Around in Apple Maps is often referred to by the same name. Here’s how to trigger Look Around on an iPhone, and how it compares with Street View proper.
To use Look Around, find a supporting address in Apple Maps. If the feature is available, you’ll see a binocular icon. Swipe to change your view, and tap on the street/path to move around.
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- How to use the Look Around feature in Apple Maps
- Apple Look Around vs Google Street View: How do they compare?
How to use the Look Around feature in Apple Maps
The first thing to know is that Look Around is only available in select cities around the world, and even then it’s often limited to parts of a city. While it’s supported in several locations around Japan, for example, the only place you can use it in Tokyo (as of this writing) is the Tokyo Metro system. Check Apple’s list for up-to-date compatibility.
Here’s how to use Look Around:
- In Apple Maps, search for an address in a supported city.
- If it supports Look Around, you’ll see a binocular icon. Tap this.
- In the Look Around pop-up, swipe around to turn or look up and down. Tap on the street/path ahead to move. You may need this, especially since addresses frequently don’t line up with what you’re actually trying to see.
- Tap the double-arrow icon to get a fullscreen view, including a compass.
- Whenever you’re finished, tap Done.
A handful of cities take advantage of Look Around tech for AR Walking Directions, such as London, New York, Tokyo, and Toronto. To trigger this, simply start walking navigation as usual, but then hold your iPhone in front of you and tap the AR cube icon if it’s available. After scanning your surroundings, your iPhone will superimpose directions on its live camera view.
Apple Look Around vs Google Street View: How do they compare?
Street View has a huge advantage in coverage. Even in the US, only a small number of cities currently have Look Around — it works in Houston, for instance, but not other major Texas cities like Austin, Dallas, or San Antonio. Street View is available in dozens of countries, including nearly total coverage in regions like the US, UK, Canada, Mexico, and Australia.
There’s not much functional difference, otherwise. Google Maps even has an AR Walking Directions equivalent called Live View. So where there’s coverage overlap, feel free to use whichever platform suits you best.