Getting Started with the Maps App on Your iPad - dummies

Getting Started with the Maps App on Your iPad

You can find lots of great functions in the Maps app for iPad, including getting directions from one location to another by foot, car, or public transportation. You can bookmark locations to return to them again. And the Maps app makes it possible to get information about locations, such as the phone numbers and Web links to businesses.

Going to your current location

You must have an Internet connection; your location can be pinpointed more exactly if you have a 3G iPad, but even Wi-Fi models do a pretty good job.

To display your current location in Maps, follow these steps:

  1. From the Home screen, tap the Maps icon. Tap the Current Location icon (the small circle to the left of the Search field).

    Your current location is displayed as a blue pin with a blue circle around it. The circle indicates how accurate the location is; it could actually be anywhere within the area of the circle.


  2. Double-tap the screen to zoom in on your location.

If you don’t have a 3G iPad, your current location is a rough estimate based on a triangulation method. Only 3G-enabled iPads with GPS can really pinpoint your location. Still, if you type in a starting location and an ending location to get directions, you can get pretty accurate results even with a Wi-Fi-only iPad.

Changing views

The Maps app offers four views: Classic, Satellite, Hybrid, and Terrain. You view the Classic view by default the first time you open Maps. To change views, swipe the bottom-right corner of the screen to turn the “page” and reveal the Maps menu. Tap the view you want and flick the corner of the page to fold it back. Here’s what these views offer:


  • Classic is your basic street map you might find in any road atlas.

  • Satellite is an aerial photographic view.


  • Hybrid offers a satellite view with street names included.


  • Terrain is a topographical map showing mountains and other variations in the landscape.


You can also turn on a feature that displays an overlay on the Classic map to show current traffic conditions. This feature shows roads in red, yellow, or green to indicate any obstructions (red for serious, yellow for caution) or roads on which cars are moving right along (green).


Zooming in and out

You’ll appreciate the feature in the Maps app that allows you to zoom in and out to see more or less detailed maps and to move around a displayed map.

  • With a map displayed, you can double-tap with a single finger to zoom in.

  • Double-tap with two fingers to zoom out, revealing less detail.


  • Place two fingers positioned together on the screen and move them apart to zoom in.

  • Place two fingers apart on the screen and then pinch them together to zoom out.

  • Press your finger to the screen, and drag the map in any direction to move to an adjacent area.

Going to another location

If you’re at Point A and want to get to Point B, you need to know how to find any location other than your current location using Maps.

To find another location, open the Maps app and tap in the Search field. Then do either of the following:


  • Type a location, using a street address with city and state, or a destination, such as Empire State Building or Detroit Airport.

    Maps may make suggestions as you type if it finds any logical matches. Tap the Search button, and the location appears with a red pin inserted in it and a label with the location, an Information icon, and in some cases, a Street view icon. If several locations match your search term, you may see several pins on the map.


  • Tap the Bookmark icon (the little book symbol to the left of the Search field), and then tap the Recent tab to reveal recently visited sites. Tap a bookmark to go there.