Use bikeshare to get around? Make sure there are always docks where you’re going, and bikes when you’re leaving, with
I recently was working on adding an “action extension” to Station to Station so you can quickly view stations nearby a location you may be viewing in another app.
(For example, if you’re viewing a contact’s vcard, and it has an address, you can tap the “share” icon, and an extension appears saying “View nearby stations”. This is super helpful for when you’re taken to a map from another app, or a link, and want to take bikeshare to get there.)
I was running through all the apps I had on my phone where I thought this would be useful: Apple Maps, Contacts, Yelp, Google Maps, etc.
When I launched the extension scheme and told Xcode to run Google Maps, I saw this immediately on launch:
canOpenURL is a method your app can call to see if the device can handle specific URLs. For example, if you wanted to compose a tweet from your app,
you can check if the device responds to the custom URL scheme
twitter://, and if not, go to the website in Safari. It’s a super useful tool in many cases.
In this case, Google Maps is checking to see if it can open URLs for:
I can’t say for sure what Google is doing with this, if anything. But I can say I’m not sure I trust their intentions.