How to get the Google Maps web app to run fullscreen with the old icon on iOS 6

How to get the Google Maps web app to run fullscreen with the old icon on iOS 6

I’ve been lucky enough to have generally decent experiences with Apple’s new Maps app. I’ve had my share of quirks, but the data is definitely ‘right enough’ in my areas for me to use it as my primary mapping tool.

But, every once in a while, I still find myself wanting to check to see if a restaurant or store is really where it says it is. So I use the Google Maps web app from my home screen. The frustration with that is that the app launches from the home screen with the Safari browser chrome still attached, which takes up space that could be used for more maps. And it uses Google’s web app icon, not the old classic iOS 5 Maps app icon, which I like a lot better.

Well, web developer Ben Guild felt the same and way back in July, he designed two special installable web profiles (mobile configurations) for the iPhone and iPad that will install the Google Maps web app to your home screen with the original iOS 5 icon and launch the apps full-screen. And they’re super easy to get running, just tap a link and hit the install button on the profile.

Here’s what the icon will look like and a comparison shot of the web app running from Guild’s shortcut vs. from the standard web clip:


To install the profiles, visit Guild’s blog here and click on the appropriate link for your device. Enter your passcode and you’ve got a fullscreen, original icon Maps app ready to go.

Thanks to Diego Torres for pointing out this easier method to me, as I went and used Apple’s developer tools to package a native version of the app, which was kind of a pain.

The wallpaper, by the way (because I know you’re going to ask, as it’s gorgeous) is by Marc Edwards of Bjango.

Image Credit: Andreas Solaro/AFP/Getty Images

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