As a tourist, there is no better way to intimate ones' self with a strange place than a map, however, the dawn of the internet has sent hard copy street maps out of fashion.
The trendy desire for flexibility and access to resource, has seamlessly led to development of applications dedicated to location services.
A lot of people limit their smartphones to calls, emails and social networking alone whereas there are loads of applications available on smartphones to enhance user's productivity.
Some apps are specially designed for travel enthusiasts to make travel easier and stress free.
These apps can truly help ease one's travel hassles especially in an unfamiliar place. These apps offer visual acquaintance of desired destination and location; they also provide directional assistance thus making travel easy.
Some of the apps are integrated with social networking facilities, thus making sharing of travel activities with colleagues and friends very easy. Hence, one can simply seek directional assistance from friends and even be located by friends.
Nokia City lens
The Windows based Nokia City lens app, uses an augmented reality browser, offering users a virtual view of their surrounding through walls and categorizing buildings based on what they represent such as food, nearby, sights or search for places manually with text.
The Lumia smartphone from Nokia uses a combination of the built-in compass and screen display to visualize landmarks, restaurants, hotels, shops and public transport stations in the immediate vicinity.
It is simply done by holding your phone up and pointing it around the City lens scan, through walls and display detailed views of Point of Interest in landscape or portrait on the flexibility Metro style interface.
The Blackberry Travel app is available for Blackberry users only. It offers platform for planning and dealing with travel activities such as finding car rentals, hotels and quick notifications about flight cancellations, changes and booking of new flight.
Travel activities can be shared directly through friends by means of email or through LinkedIn.
BB-Travel app automatically finds out the schedule and booking confirmations of flight and sends them directly to users' inbox.
The Blackberry Maps app offers point-to-point directions mapping experience for travelers.
The interactive map helps user' in reaching their destination by just typing in the address; thus simplifying how to get direction to key point in town such as restaurants, business locations and tourist attraction.
Users can send maps to friends through email. It also has log-tracker for GPS-enabled BlackBerry which allows users to keep a record of their route, which helps in redirecting you in case you miss a direction or take a wrong turn.
The zoom function allows for detailed viewing up to street level. Bookmarking your favorite locations helps in getting them back whenever it's needed.
Google Maps are quite common with mobile phone users. It's equipped with fantastic features under the auspices of 'MyLocation'.
The beauty of the Google Map is that, it gives the approximate location even when the smartphone is not GPS enabled.
Another fascinating option is the 'Latitude' through with which one can find out where friends are hanging out. It provides direct access to Google Maps, Gmail, Google Reader and Google News. Unlike other travel apps, the Google Map gives full satellite view on the smartphone screen.
It gives a more detailed zooming, capable of zooming to one's house with impressive 3D view that allows for automatic 3-dimention rotation of particular direction in focus.