What BlackBerry Maps is lacking, BeMaps 10 Pro makes up for

By James Richardson on 31 Jul 2013 02:13 pm EDT

I'm a big fan of BlackBerry Maps that we now have on BlackBerry 10, but we all know it is pretty basic. In terms of turn by turn navigation it does a great job, but it's lacking a bunch of features that maybe could have been implemented. So I was pretty excited to see BeMaps 10 Pro arrive in BlackBerry World and knew I had to try it out.

The app is totally different to BlackBerry Maps, but does offer the missing features that I have needed on certain occasions. The big gripe for me with BlackBerry Maps is that when I am in a city such as London I want to be able to see on the map where all the Tube stations are but they aren't present. However, with BeMaps 10 Pro they certainly are there as the maps are based on Google Maps, so you can see everything and that makes for a happy James.

As the application is a native BlackBerry one it has that nice familiar UI to it. At the top of the display is a search box which leaps into life when you touch it. Not only can you obviously type in what you want to search for but the app also has a nice selection of illustrated tabs which you can scroll through. These range from coffee shops and restaurants to hotels and gas stations. Give one a tap and the map opens up showing you where they are all located. There are zoom tabs on screen but pinch to zoom also works which is a bonus.

Coming back to main home screen/map there are three tabs at the base of the display. The first is a search one (why we have two options I don't know) and next to that is 'Directions'. Here you can enter your destination and also choose your mode of transport. Press 'Go' and the route is shown on the map. You can also get a list of the directions (with road names and distance) and under the map is the option for 'Turn-By-Turn'. The thing I'm pleased with here is that BeMaps doesn't support turn-by-turn so BlackBerry Maps opens automatically. As I said previously; this suits me perfectly.

Back to the home screen and the final tab is 'Layers'. Once in this section you can toggle on and off the following - Satellite, Traffic, Transit and Bike. Super options to have but also to be expected.

So for me I think that BeMaps 10 Pro is pretty awesome and will serve me well in the future. For a native app that does as much as it does I'd say it's worth it's price tag of £2.50/$3.99.

The list of features is huge as you will see below:

  • Maps based on the popular Google Maps
  • Lock the map to your GPS position to automatically follow you
  • 'My location' indicator with compass heading indicator will always show you where you are
  • Search for addresses, places and locations worldwide using the powerful Google Maps based search
  • Shortcuts for searching for restaurants, coffee, bars, grocery stores, hotels, gast stations, post offices, pharmacies, malls and ATMs nearby
  • Show additional layers on map like satellite, public transit, traffic and bike lanes
  • Tap on hold to drop a pin anywhere on the map to learn more and use it as a starting point for street view and directions
  • Tap a point of interest (POI) icon to learn more about the place or business
  • Detailed information about thousands of places wordwide, including descriptions, phone numbers, website and reviews from other Google users
  • Get car, public transit, walking or bike directions between any two locations
  • Get stunning, 360-degree Street View panoramas to help you find your way in many locations of the world
  • Zoom in and out of the map with the zoom buttons, pinch-to-zoom or a one finger gesture (tap, tap-and-hold, then slide up/down)
  • Optional full screen mode gives you more screen real estate on QWERTY devices

If you give this one a shot feel free to let us know what you would like to see implemented in future updates. That goes for BlackBerry Maps too.

More information/Download BeMaps 10 Pro for BlackBerry 10

Reader comments

What BlackBerry Maps is lacking, BeMaps 10 Pro makes up for


Not all Brits call the underground railway 'the Tube'. I, for instance, live in Glasgow in Scotland which also has a small underground railway system of its own, originally constructed in Victorian times, which is known locally as 'the Subway'. The London Underground has been nicknamed 'the Tube' by the locals there.

Agree... How many Android users have to pay for and download a 3rd party Map App?

I know it's only $4, but at this point the map function is one of the main product used by smartphone owners. And BlackBerry Maps is pretty good, but it IS LACKING many features that people have come to EXPECT from mapping applications.

No, it is what people have come to expect from google maps, which is all the mapping apps most people need, but unfortunately for bb10 users we do not have that option at this point.

Hm, but Google Maps works on BB10! Not perfectly well, admittedly, but it does the job.

Posted via CB10

I actually loaded it from apk2bar and it works perfectly. Its a little slow to load sometimes but probably due to size, still once it's up, it's Google through and through.
What's most impressive to me is that I thought it may be a little skewed due to being on my Q10 but it isn't.Nice app to have on board.

Is BlackBerry going to get a map app with Lsd's for the guys in the oil patch. No not the drug

Posted via CB10

Needs more options like being able to save your work/home address or a trip and it will be worth the price asked for it. But it's a good start! The global user experience is good thanks to a clean and polished interface. If only all BB10 apps were like this...

We are working on adding many improvements to BeMaps10. Having something like 'My Places' has so far been one of the most requested features and we are looking into it.

For global travelers, we also need offline maps. Side loaded Google maps offers this option. Was very useful while roaming in Europe.

Posted via CB10

That certainly appears to be a significant improvement over the pretty feeble Blackberry Maps but I cannot consider any navigation application that depends on streaming in map data as a comprehensive and dependable product. Streaming in map data is ok if you never leave suburbia and a reliable network connection but as soon as you find youself in a rural area, up in the mountains or whatever it immediately becomes useless. You'll also need deep pockets if you want to use a streaming navigation application while travelling abroad. So for me no application that relies on maps supplied over the network will ever score 10/10

I know right? Just side load Google Maps if you want.

Posted via CB10 on my BlackBerry Z10 on Rogers.

The big question I have - does this app solve the same issue BB Maps has?
When I take a long trip and the device locks - turn-by-turn voice navigation stops working.
My device will lock after 15 minutes according to Balance and the BES policy my office has implemented.

I have no issue when the phone locks, it's still active and announces the next turn even locked.

Not sure if the OS makes a difference but I'm running

What moves you, my Z10 / Check out my BBM Channel C000E8328

I am not sure if the OS makes a difference, but I am running the new official VZW release of 10.1

This may help that problem: Go to Settings, go to Security and Privacy; go to device password, turn on "Allow Apps to Extend Password Lock Time". I don't have the issue you are describing and have this setting turned on, so maybe that will do it.

Jaralle - That option is set to "Off" and is grayed out due to our Balance integration.
I bet you are correct and this is indeed the issue.

I will purchase as well. Here is an example of a developer who took the time to create a very good native app for the BB10 platform. We need more of them. So in my view he deserves to be rewarded for his efforts.

Posted via CB10 from my spectacular Z10

I agree with supporting devs who develop for BBRY and I would grab this map if it had offline capabilities. Currently, this would kill my data plan.

Posted via CB10, Rocking the Z10

I purchased this app today and have to say that it is awesome and simple to use... I think it is a good investment over the native bbry map app...

Sent by Bbry Z10

BlackBerry traffic is integrated into BlackBerry Maps. When you choose a destination ams plan a route, select 'edit' and turn Traffic on. From that point on, your routes will be optimized for traffic

Posted via CB10

I just bought this and it's the best of both worlds to me: Google Maps in a native package. The only thing that BlackBerry Maps does that is better is the font size. It keeps a larger font size throughout, which makes a difference when I have it up in my car mount. That's the only thing I wish this had. Other than that this is great. Looking forward to putting it through the paces.

Posted via CB10

I'm a fan of this one, too, for filling the public transportation niche that Blackberry Maps leaves out. But something I dislike is that unlike actual Google Maps, which will give you three or four options for different routes to take (different train or bus routes, for example), as well as options like "fewer transfers" or "fastest time", this app seems to only bring up one route. Also, as another commenter mentioned, you can't save locations like "home" and "work" for quick access later.

If they could add in those elements, this app would be perfect.

Just purchased it as well..pretty good,and quickly goes to voice nav when needed through the bbmap app

This looks good. However I have been using BlackBerry maps a lot lately and really like it. Never locks up and I use the avoid highways feature a lot. Also the search can work pretty well depending on what you are looking for. Hope they keep up the good work.

Posted via CB10

Sold! I was thinking about it but I wasn't sure how they handled turn by turn. Knowing it is the BlackBerry maps version which works great for me whether in BC or Ontario I'm all in!

From my sweet BB10 Neutrino powered Z10 :D

Google Maps was and is always the first sideloaded app on my Z10 - - and it's free. BB Maps also gets a step up in 10.2.

Public transit directions! Yes! The thing I was most missing since jumping to BB10 with the sideloaded Google Places not being ideal

Not trying to sound rude, but did you read the whole article. It opens BB Maps when you select turn by turn.

My only gripe with BlackBerry maps is that it doesn't handle spelling errors well.

Posted via CB10

My only gripe with BlackBerry maps is that it doesn't show traffic in a convenient way in the turn by turn navigation screen, nor does it allow me to readily bypass traffic. I wish they would add the functionality of Blackberry Traffic, which did this brilliantly!

Used all the navigation apps across android, ios, and, BlackBerry. Waze gets the nod due to traffic accuracy. BlackBerry maps is oddly a favorite. I really like the simplicity. Which kind of translates to minimal features but it is one of the best.

Posted via CB10

A big huge +1 on that too.

Having just come from Nokia the biggest single application I miss is Nokia Maps with offline map data. I wonder if the people praising the various online map applications here actually know what they are missing with such a comprehensive navigation application like Nokia Maps/Here not being available on Blackberry.

Tom Tom don't make their sat nav devices with GSM receivers to stream in map data because they think it's a better way to do it. Offline all the way because it is infinitely superior in all respects.

The problem with offline access to Google Maps is that Google's terms and conditions forbid 3rd party developers to offer this functionality.

Have you tried Mireo Don't Panic? It provides offline maps, downloadable to either device or SD card. It provides turn-by-turn navigation, and uses Tom Tom maps, updated quarterly. The app is free, but you pay for the maps you want, and then the updates are free. Since I started using it, I haven't used anything else for navigation. The only downside I've found is it doesn't speak street names. It offers a free 7 day trial on the maps, so you should give it a try if you haven't already.

No I haven't but I'll take a look. Thanks for pointing me in the right direction. At the moment I'm still bringing my previous Nokia E6 along to use instead of the Q10 when I know I'm going to be needing navigation in advance. Blackberry Maps is just too much of a dumbed down backward step to be an acceptable alternative.

I bought this and it's not bad, but unfortunately the turn by turn just uses BB Maps, and if that is not accurate in your area, you are still pooched. They need to code their own TBT using googles data, then it would be a complete package.


I was excited about this until I realized with Google Maps already sideloaded and BB10 Maps with Traffic built in, I already have the functionality of this app.

Posted via CB10

So once again 3rd party map/navigation apps are going to be superior to the included mapping application...

I just used BlackBerry Maps and found the turn by turn instructions to be slow. Instructions to turn when you are at or just past the street is no good.

Posted via CB10

Was like that for me with 10.0.9.
It's not laggy at all with 10.1.
Upcoming turns are announced in advance even when "Traveling quickly".

Posted via CB10

I can't justify paying for this particular app when its offerings are what should be incorporated into our native map app.

I actually like to see paid solutions having a success on BlackBerry World cause that will attract developers

Posted via CB10

@Bobshine, agreed. Paid apps don't cost very much anymore, I paid 20.00 for Mireo. Along the rocky cliffs of the California coast I don't get much network coverage, but GPS is almost always there. So the price was worth it for me.
I imagine the more innovative and skillful devs would be attracted to a platform where the users don't mind paying a few bucks for the right app.

I just purchased this app and I love it. It does its job and I highly recommend it. It gave me the right address locations, list views, maps, etc. Better than all other alternatives in my opinion.

Posted via CB10

I bought it a few days ago finally a good Google maps solution so I don't have to use a sideload or the mobile version.

CB10- BlackBerry Z10

It's a simple world for me. Blackberry Maps is great if one has an address and knows where one is going. I love it. Embarrassing to watch my brother tap a desired place like Starbucks into his Android phone and get immediate results. I have tried all manner of "SayIt", Poynt, the Yelp "like" app etc for the simple favor of - where is there a nearby Starbucks. None work. I agree that the native Map application should do this. And I have mountains of sideloaded apps. But I wanted to simply find Starbucks quickly and in a native fast moving app. And this does it beautifully. BB10 is still young. The promise is strong.

I drive my own pickup truck and I will never use public transit. BlackBerry Maps gets the job done for me perfectly

Posted via CB10

Very good app!
1. Setting for display to always stay on while plugged in to power.
2. Map follows the blue dot whole on a route.
3. Calculate ETA in real time based on location on route.
4. Re-route from my location button.
5. Easier way to switch to turn-by-turn voice guidance via BlackBerry maps and without having to click ok to acknowledge the handover each time.

- aBBuser

Regarding #2, click the little arrow icon in the lower left corner. This will lock the map to your current location and follow your current location (you will see the arrow lights up in blue)

More features will be coming.

I've noticed a battery drain since installing the app. Severely drained when in use. Do you guys experience that as well?

CrazyBack, all sat nav apps are like that, including BB Maps. Some are worse than others. Batteries run hot also. Not much you can do about it except use it sparingly. I pause navigation on long stretches and resume when I need it.

I'm a maps aficionado, and have all the current solutions for BB10 since none of them completely solves all use cases yet. I use Waze, Mireo Don't Panic, Google Maps side load, Google Maps web, BeMaps 10 Pro, BB10 maps, as well as many of the other Google map apps in BB world (but won't list them since were quite lacking, even the one that is Built for BB.) I really like BeMaps 10 Pro, especially for the public transit capabilities. But there are a few things that they need to implement to make it a tour de force:

- Add sign in ability to access your Google maps favorite places. I spend a lot of time marking my favorite places in the desktop clients and it would be great to be able to see them all appear on the device
- Add favorites ability to the local device. In the event it's not possible to sign into Google to get saved places, at least let us store favorites locally.
- Improve the zooming function. I notice that when I zoom in with the thumb gestures or double tap it often goes to a different area of the map instead of re-centering and refocusing
- Improve performance of the GPS. I've noticed the arrow is often pointing in the wrong direction, even though the dot really moves in the right direction, but a bit jittery. So far the (GPS for Mireo wins the smoothness and accuracy award)
- It's a bit sluggish pulling maps up and rendering could be faster

All said and done, I really like BeMaps and am hopeful additional improvements will be coming down the line. The native aspect of this really shines through. With the addition of favorites, I could replace the Google sideload as well as Google web client.

Some form of a 'My Places' functionality has probably been the most requested features so far, so we are definitely looking into adding it, either via Google Maps if possible, or via our own solution.

Needs to be a from Google API really, i already have loads of saved locations, plus i use a Nexus 7 and want to be able to access them across platforms.

This paired with blackberry maps for turn by turn and mireo for offline and my z10 is a pro tool. I've also mounted it seamlessly on my dash

Posted via CB10

BlackBerry maps can't navigate in Cambodia. Please update to make it available, thanks.

Posted via CB10

So we have to pay for something, which BlackBerry should have provided in the first place... clever...very clever

Posted via CB10

I had purchase so man map apps, and the Most of them was really disappointed...
Im Not sure about purchase this one.

With OS 10.2 Google Maß rund like a Charme and is beautiful.
The online thing, street view is Not working...
But I like to have one app for all.



Posted via CB10

I'm in qatar so it's difficult to test these things out without spending money and losing it all to find out it doesn't work in my country... bb maps is useless here doesn't even show a single road.. im using ported Google maps works perfectly :)

Posted via CB10

I still prefer the Google maps sideload for day to day use as it features vector maps and 3D, but it doesn't include streetview, so this app is a good all on one, despite the higher data usage.

My PlayBook? Very useful in the shower as a radio and notepad :)

One area that I feel BeMaps is sorely lacking in, is the "alternate routes" option when giving directions. I know it spits out what it feels is the best route, but I don't know if that's factoring in traffic. Also, it doesn't provide any alternates. One of my primary uses of sideloaded google maps is to see which route to take based on traffic on my daily commute. It would be nice if bemaps offered alternates, and factored in traffic like native google maps does. (it'd be even cooler if it then made bb maps follow the route you select... but not sure that's possible)

Oh, and the turn-by-turn is so lengthy to get to! we should have a quick "navigate here" button. Or at least be able to configure the "directions list" button to throw us straight into bb maps. And also be able to disable the hand-off to bb maps warning! (checkbox: Do not show this message again)

Loving the concept of this app. I have been using HaTaxa's modified Google Maps sideload constantly as I am a delivery driver. One thing I love about Google Maps is how easy it is to add a destination as a favorite to plot my route for the day. Once this feature is added to this app as well as a choice for alternate routes my day will be so much easier not to mention safer. Many thanks to the developer.

Posted via CB10

The maps solution should be free or the whole BlackBerry as a brand will fail. My first phone with android still have more functionality than this expensive crap.

And speaking of original BlackBerry maps it's just a piece of hit, totally useless crap, since it shows me in a middle of nowhere when I travel to eastern Europe or to India or to Russia. We have described the whole world for a couple of centuries, and Google gave it for free for a second decade and only in Canada it is still a mid ages.

Posted via CB10

Just paid $3.99 for this & it doesn't find my correct current location. It finds the location where I was 2 days ago before I even had installed this map. I hope this will b fixed soon or that I can get my money back.

Posted via CB10

Any help sideloading Google Maps? I used the 7.02 version but when sideloading with Chrome PlayBook App manager on my Z10 STL-1 it just says it has an "-12 error" and it doesn´t work.
Any suggestion, alternative method or workaround for sideloading Google Maps?

(sorry for my English, I'm not a native speaker)

I depended on BeMaps until I sideloaded Google maps. The recent update (Feb 11, 2015) unfortunately fails to allow interactive transit displays on OS 10.3.1.