Widget support on iPhone has been around for a while as it’s built into the left panel of iOS.
The widget allowed users to configure the home and work address and then view the travel time from their current location without launching the app.
That’s how it worked. Imagine you were at work and wanted to see how long it would take you to get home. A single tap on the home icon in the widget will display Waze’s predicted travel time. Travel time was determined using the typical waze je ne sais quoi by blending the quickest route to the destination with real-time traffic information.
Few people have used the widget, according to the Google-owned company. Because of this, Waze has decided to retire this feature entirely, with the latest version of the app removing it once and for all.
Oddly enough, one of the best Waze features on the iPhone was the widget. The company does not seem to be planning another widget for Apple users.
iOS 14 launched with a new widget experience for iPhone owners, allowing users to add them to the home screen. At the same time, iPhones also featured a left-side widget panel that offered a legacy design for certain apps, including Waze. Now that the navigation app doesn’t use the old widget anymore, a newer design to use the latest iOS improvements would make perfect sense.
Google Maps already offers new-generation widgets on the iPhone. The navigation app can display real-time travel information as well as the latest traffic conditions, location details, store hours and reviews on the iPhone home screen.
Meanwhile, other big Waze features are in the works. Support for Coolwalk, the highly anticipated Android Auto redesign, is already in beta with public launch expected soon. Coolwalk allows applications to run in parallel on Android Auto in an interface similar to the CarPlay dashboard.
The navigation apps, including Google Maps, get access to the largest map. These solutions will need an update to run in the dedicated space, and Waze is expected to improve on that front in the coming weeks.
Meanwhile, the demise of the Waze widget is bad news for many users, although few people actually use it or even know about it. Those who have used it have no way to quickly get driving information about their most frequent destinations. The version that removes widget support from iOS is 4.92. So as soon as you install them on an iPhone, the feature is completely gone.