back to article Apple: Blue-shirts can fix iOS Maps in their spare time

Concerned that the blue-shirt in the Apple Store isn't paying enough attention to your questions about charger adapters for your iPhone 5? Maybe that's because she's trying to correct the location of the local airport on Apple's Maps application. One of Apple's new strategies for fixing iOS Maps is to get their retail staff …

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  1. Dave 126 Silver badge

    Can anyone estimate....

    ... how long it will take them to get their maps to the standard users expect? Just how messed up are their maps? Without delving too deep, it would be my assumption that it would be quicker for Apple to buy a working solution from a third party, or at least buy a years license for third-party map app for all iOS6 users- tiding them over til Apple have got their own maps fixed.

    1. Lee Dowling Silver badge

      Re: Can anyone estimate....

      Put it this way:

      How long has OpenStreetMap been running and how many volunteers have they had?

      Because without a similar sort of effort, they won't approach even OpenStreetMap's quality of mapping (which is far from perfect, but not as terrible as Apple's).

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Can anyone estimate....

      Good idea, they could license maps data from that thrusting new startup called "Google", maybe? I understand that their maps are pretty decent.

      1. Mephistro Silver badge
        Black Helicopters

        Re: Can anyone estimate....

        Agreed. And there is a chance that they have done just that, bundling it with an undisclosed amount of -tons of- cash and a patent agreement that will end the patent strife for all the companies involved -Google and Android device makers on one side, Apple on the other. Good for the companies involved, bad for little companies and individuals trying to innovate, and to everybody else, as this Apple patent brouhaha was the only thing that could force the USAians to ditch Software Patents and do some very needed reform to their Patent System.

        Paranoid? Yeah, that's my second name. :-)

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Can anyone estimate....

      Is there a solution available from a third party that is open for licensing, works well and isn't Google? It's my understanding Apple have bought data from all over the place and stitched it together because there isn't a monolithic supplier out there that has quality data for every country.

      As to how messed up Apple's maps are, I suppose it depends on where you are and how much you want to believe the media hyperbole. I was looking for various old haunts from Cardiff on there the other night and comparing them to Google Maps and both had things in the wrong place or that aren't there any more. If anything the Apple maps had some POIs that Google didn't. Of course that doesn't mean Apple's maps are perfect but I think the current perception that they're a total disaster is rather overblown.

      I'd say the two major flaws are rubbish satellite imagery in places and no Street View. Apple should be able to fix the satellite problem but they're a bit knackered on the latter unless they can massively improve the 3D flyover quality to allow street level viewing (and even then I don't think it would work as well as the actual photos Google use).

      1. rvt

        Re: Can anyone estimate....

        I fully agree with al your points except..

        1) Street view isn't needed for navigation, flyover is also not needed, even if it works.

        2) Satellite image is indeed of lower quality with Apple Maps, however it's more up-to-date in many area's then what Google has. At least where I live, but i read from the internet the same that Google has old sattelite data.

        3) Google won't have the needed resources to keep there streetview up-to-date aswell. So give it a view more years and we will have loads of complaing users that Google's dataset is out-of-date

        4) POI's is something that apple has to work on really hard to get everything in there maps.

        5) Searches in Apple Mapps is terribly broken. When I was searching for chocolate shops in france, close to Lille I, Apple maps found the seconds closest store in LA (USA), that's not very helpfull!

      2. Best Before:
        FAIL

        Re: Can anyone estimate....

        regarding the following:

        "As to how messed up Apple's maps are, I suppose it depends on where you are and how much you want to believe the media hyperbole"

        Whilst i am not a staunch supporter of any specific company (I just buy or use a product i believe is of quality for me), i also conversely don't typically jump on the bandwagon if said company cocks up but I have to say the Apple maps product is fairly dire and made me look like a complete numpty (not hard I know) the other day.

        I had travelled to a city the other day that i am not overly familiar with and needed to get to a meeting, looked at the map on my iPhone which stated there was a train station there. So went in to the info office and asked the guy what line i should take to get to the station. He was looking at me blankly so i repeated the question slowed my words down and increased pitch, as you do, to which he replied "Sorry mate they knocked that station and building down about 3 years ago."

        Whoopsie, did I feel like an idiot.

        In summary from my limited usage I concur with the media, its shite.

    4. davemcwish
      Paris Hilton

      Re: Can anyone estimate....

      That's what I thought they had done, indeed OSM and TomTom have stated that Apple use their data:-

      http://blog.osmfoundation.org/2012/10/02/apple-maps/

      http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20120611006133/en/Apple-License-TomTom%E2%80%99s-Content

      Being a regular user of both, if OSM's post is correct it looks like someone in Cupertino has royally ****** up here.

      I'm guessing Paris must be their tech lead on this.

    5. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Can anyone estimate....

      This way? Years.

    6. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Needs more

      Work than that, I no longer exist, my place of work no longer exists, even the main road and nearest town is located 60 miles in the wrong place.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Needs more

        >Work than that, I no longer exist,

        If you were the size of a small truck and have spent the last three years stood on the same spot, your news would astound me!

        When I fail see to see myself on a map app, I assume I just was't there at the time. Doubly so, since most satellite photos seem to have been taken early in the day ; D

    7. Lars Silver badge
      WTF?

      Re: Can anyone estimate....

      It is not about the maps, what Apple is doing here is a fantastic "smoke screen", they know that the problem is with the programming but now they want their employees to think and to signal it is all about the maps.

      Must give them some credit for this whooping lie. Many will probably believe them.

  2. hitmouse

    I will be interested to see how these casual city planners will reinstate entire communities that have been wiped off the map, or how they will reintegrate public transport services.

  3. St3n
    FAIL

    With the amount of money Apple are sitting on, this just proves they don't give a shit about end users.

    1. Anonymous Cowerd
      Unhappy

      If Apple actually gave a shit...

      ...they'd let us revert to iOS 5.1.1. until this cr-app is sorted out.

      1. opaque

        Re: If Apple actually gave a shit...

        Noone made you upgrade.

        I didn't as I always wait to see if anything like this happens.

        1. Anonymous Cowerd
          Stop

          Re: Noone made you upgrade.

          I didn't. Lots of people did and were caught unawares by this pile of crap.

          Doesn't alter the fact that apple should at least allow them to revert to the last known good OS.

        2. Fibbles

          Re: If Apple actually gave a shit...

          "Noone made you upgrade."

          Unless of course your first Apple product was an iPhone 5. You know, Apple's flagship product? You can't downgrade those things.

      2. Bill B

        Re: If Apple actually gave a shit...

        Er .. why did you upgrade?

        Personally speaking my iPhone is still on IOS5 because the mapping is important and the iPad is now on IOS6 just so I could see what the problems are.

        A brief comparison of my locality shows Google seems to be similar to (or slightly worse) than Apple in the location of places. Weirdly in IOS6 maps things that are misplaced on the map are properly placed in Yelp when you tap them. Go figure

        1. rvt

          Re: If Apple actually gave a shit...

          The reason why Apple has so many places mis-placed on there maps is because some of there GIS implementors didn't understand the concepts very well.

          Different areas in the world use different mapping systems. And even a lat/long location will be the same over years, you need to compensate due to tectonic plates shifting around. if you don't compensate properly you will see that your POI's will be moved every so slightly (meters).

          This should be a fairly easy fix for Apple because in theory this is just math. Practically I can imagine they want to test this well on there preproduction environment.

          It will happen within a couple of months and I am pretty sure Apple will get this right, we will see far more POI's located correctly and search corrected. Street info was already correct.

          1. n4blue
            Stop

            tectonic plates???

            I thought tectonic plates moved only a few cm per year. Unless the Apple Store in Sydney has been there for a 100 years or so I think you'd be hard pressed to use that as an excuse for a POI being off position by 200m.

    2. davemcwish

      End Users

      Correct, and the end users don't care what dross Apple churn out these days they'll upgrade (h/w and s/w) regardless.

  4. Paul Shirley

    i scent mischief

    How unfortunate would it be if groups of "concerned citizens" started submitting the same false corrections. .

    Though if it's anything like Google corrections will just be ignored.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: i scent mischief

      I submitted four corrections to the maps and they've all been sorted. Took a while, but they got there eventually.

      Now if the navigation part would stop changing to an American voice and it's appalling pronunciation, that would be even better.

      I had to look at the roadsign I was passing to translate Loo-burrow as actually being Loughborough.

      1. DAN*tastik
        Headmaster

        @ AC 10:13 GMT - Re: i scent mischief

        "it's appalling pronunciation"

        The irony...

      2. Steve Todd

        Re: i scent mischief

        They seem to take their damned time about it. Broadgate, next to Liverpool street station, is still called Broad Gate, despite me having reported it two weeks ago.

    2. HMB

      Re: i scent mischief

      I've let them know that Sodburry is a very rude and ridiculous name and that it's actually called Poopyshire. A few more people making the same update and I think we'll be in there :P

  5. TRT Silver badge

    WAre you sure it wasn't...

    an Appology?

  6. The Bit Wrangler
    Joke

    Surely...

    ... the Apple Way is to correct the towns so that their maps are correct ?

    1. Archibald Trumpetbeetle
      Meh

      Yeah it's no big deal

      The towns are holding the ground wrong

  7. Miffo

    Wasn't it Tomtom data?

    Didn't they get the data from Tomtom and then wangle it in some way? I thought their fix was going to be to fix the map wangling program they must have ran so that it doesn't bugger up the Tomtom data which I presume is correct.

    What's the story? How did they mess up the Tomtom data? Or is it not a case of that?

    1. stanimir

      Re: Wasn't it Tomtom data?

      They got from multiple sources, there are towns that appear twice around 25 miles apart (and neither is at the exact location).

      Imagine the amount of trust a person would put: some unknown bod correcting maps and then I try voice navigation with that crap, the idea is beyond horrible. I mean sitting on mountain of cash and coming up w/ such a brain-sapped solution is truly a marked effort from the higher management (but if you are stupid there is no cure, so no surprises)

    2. squilookle
      Terminator

      Re: Wasn't it Tomtom data?

      To be fair, there is a bridge over the A1 where my father's TomTom tells you to turn right... it's atleast a 30 foot drop (if you make it over the barrier, of course).

      1. Lee Dowling Silver badge

        Re: Wasn't it Tomtom data?

        My TomTom seems to like a particular roundabout in Chelmsford and if I followed its instructions, I'd still be circling it:

        "Go around the roundabout" - 180 degrees later - "Go around the roundabout" - ad infinitum.

        But that's not a critical mapping error, so much as a slip-up or mistyping. The problem Apple has is sheer lack of data in some places and vastly inaccurate data in others (e.g. going 25 miles away from the address you intended and then leaving you there).

        Minor mapping errors will always occur, and the driver should be compensating appropriately anyway. Just because it says turn right doesn't mean you a) can, b) should, c) will be safe doing so.

        1. squilookle

          Re: Wasn't it Tomtom data?

          "Minor mapping errors will always occur, and the driver should be compensating appropriately anyway. Just because it says turn right doesn't mean you a) can, b) should, c) will be safe doing so."

          That didn't really need stating, Lee. My point isn't that the maps should be perfect or that there should be no errors, I was just responding to the OP that the Tom tom data isn't perfect, with an example that I think is quite funny.

    3. Big_Ted

      Re: Wasn't it Tomtom data?

      Its because they are using data from many sources and putting them together. It is not an easy fix like Google that has everything integrated from the start so is a lot harder to fix, add to that the mess that the 3D imaging is adding and its a long hard fix for them as so many points of interest / businesses are wrongly tagged.

  8. Big_Ted
    FAIL

    But how

    are they going to correct the places that don't exist on the map ?

    And are Apple going to get their luw shirts to head out in the luch break checking turn by turn etc? If so expect empty stores in the afternoon.....

    The easiest solution is to either put the Google app back on or an "app" that is in fact a bookmark to either google or nokia maps in the browser until they get theirs sorted, with luck they could then drop it again by iOS7.....

    1. thesykes

      Re: But how

      If it's all automated, slap a big X in the middle of a field and mark "Here be treasure"... see if it appears on the maps.

    2. Si 1

      Re: But how

      If there's something missing you tap and hold on the location until a pin drops onto it. Then you choose "Report a Problem" -> "Information is incorrect" and then enter the name, address, phone, hours, URL and category of the location. I've done it a few times now and they've appeared fairly quickly.

      1. It wasnt me
        Thumb Down

        Re: But how

        Thats all well nad good. Buy I paid a premium for my iPhone 4s, and ill be fucked if if im going to spend my time, money and data allowance fixing a shoddy service. I paid a premium because all my apple kit just works well. I love it as is. But I wont be updating to iOS6, and i wont be buying an iphone 5. Ive defended apple in the past but this maps thing really takes the biscuit. Either they fix it, let google release an app that I can set to be the default, or theyve lost a customer. I suspect (and genuinely hope) that this may be start of the downfall of apple. As much as I like their kit, the company is a complete arse, and I suspect that more and more people are starting to not like their kit.

        1. LPF
          FAIL

          Re: But how

          Yeah yeah sure, mate stop acting like you have an iPhone , you have an android phone and you want to add to the current Hysteria becuase eveyone is stillin buying iPhones as fast as they turn up in the shops! you sadsack!

          1. Arctic fox
            Thumb Down

            @LPF "Re: But how" You know it's a funny thing but I have for some reason........

            ..............rather old fashioned reservations about calling somebody a liar in the absence of any solid indication that they are, simply because I want it to be the case. How about you?

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: But how

      *sigh*

      "...or an "app" that is in fact a bookmark to either google or nokia maps in the browser until they get theirs sorted,"

      From Tim Cook's letter;

      "...or use Google or Nokia maps by going to their websites and *creating an icon on your home screen to their web app."

      (* links to http://www.apple.com/ios/add-to-home-screen/)

  9. Alan Denman

    Surely the blue shirt buyers will buy into it to.

    Just think of it as a luxury health spa as you look for errors.

    You are on the Apple tread mill.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Surely the blue shirt buyers will buy into it to.

      In your "spare time" are you Blue Shirts REALLY going to fix no-pay Apple Maps problems or are you REALLY going to try to get next customer to buy Apple products in order to get your sales bonus instead of your peers? REALLY.

      1. NeilMc

        Re: Surely the blue shirt buyers will buy into it to.

        But surely the blue shirts are incentivised to sell Apple products, so that will come first.

        As regards then getting the blue shirts to update the maps that might take skills that they do not have' Apple may as well pay Apes with peanuts to get the job down. They would have a better shot at a quality outcome......

        I foresee loads of people walking aimlessly in circles and bumping into each other as they focus on their smartphones trying to get some place....

  10. BioPeek
    Facepalm

    Location Errors

    Excuse me, but I'm here. I'm here!

    1. thomas k.

      Re: Location Errors

      I'm me! Neely O'Hara!

  11. ukgnome
    FAIL

    Am I the only one that wonders what the POI of the average apple genius is?

    1. Mephistro Silver badge
      Happy

      Yes!!!

      What is a POI???

      1. Mephistro Silver badge
        Coat

        Re: Yes!!!

        Found it!

        It's a POstorgasmic Illness syndrome

  12. Justice
    Trollface

    Tim 'Consuela' Cook

    He reminds me of the maid from Family Guy.

    Is broken.

    No.

    No.

    I no do it. YOU fix it.

    1. This post has been deleted by its author

  13. Chris 171
    Devil

    So....

    Thats the apple store & coffee shop POI's fixed then... Now what about the useful stuff?

    Logic dictates working in a circle, does not a good mapping company make.

  14. IglooDude

    Indeed, I didn't think SimCity ran on Macs.

  15. Andy Johnson
    Thumb Down

    Imagery

    That still doesn't fix satellite imagery which over my area is just 1 big blur or give any kind of street view which was something I used a lot on the old iOS Maps.

    1. Big_Ted
      Devil

      Re: Imagery or give any kind of street view

      Don't worry, Apple are working on an app that uses your camera and gps any time the phone is in your hand to take pictures of the local area around you.

      These will then be sent to your nearest Apple church for the geniuses to sort out, any that are not usable for streetview but of ahem interest, will of course be used to ensure you keep buying from them and get Apple tatoo'd onto your forehead...

    2. opaque

      Re: Imagery

      Same as Google Maps then? Aerial views either blurred for over 6 years old. Whole communities not shown because they weren't there that long ago, major transport links not shown for exactly the same reason.

      Google Maps is great, but people seem to think that it's perfect. It's not.

    3. rvt

      Re: Imagery

      I am not sure how you did that, and I still have a IOs 5 device, but streetview was never available on iOS with Google maps, so I wonder how you ever got to use that.

  16. Why Not?
    Facepalm

    just you wait

    Apple will start suing towns for being in the wrong place.

    Soon Bath will have to be renamed iBath to avoid seizure.

    Unbelievable Apple have mucked this up. I'm sure all the sat nav manufacturers would have licensed their maps or been available for purchase.

  17. ForthIsNotDead
    Unhappy

    Didn't take long...

    ...for Apple to completely FAIL after the regrattable passing of His Jobiness, did it?

    If Saint Jobs The Holy were still around, this 'phone would still be in the labs, and the white coats/softies would be getting the hair dryer treatment, me thinks.

    Probably better that he's not around to witness such an embaressing, epic fail.

    1. DAN*tastik

      Re: Didn't take long...

      He put his face on a phone which wouldn't make calls ( and, my guess here, but possibly wouldn't connect at all either? ) without a 25 quid elastic ban around it. Shitty maps seem nothing compared to that, to me at least.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Didn't take long...

        Wow. Just wow. How many Android users are there in the Register forums anyway?

        1. Dante

          Re: Didn't take long...

          There's more reasons to dislike Apple than petty OS tribalism.

  18. TeeCee Gold badge

    Makes sense.

    Action: Get Apple store staff to provide the corrections.

    Result: Accurate mapping is available in the vicinity of Apple stores.

    Presumably anywhere that doesn't have an Apple store isn't important enough to be worth worrying about anyway.

    1. opaque

      Re: Makes sense.

      Basic changes done by normal people leaving the skilled people to concentrate on the big things perhaps?

  19. LPF
    Thumb Down

    Of the people commenting on this thread..

    How many of you need to use the GPS to go to a different location each day? seriously the amount of rubbish generated by this so called "Story", you android fans need to get a life!

    1. DAN*tastik

      Re: Of the people commenting on this thread..

      I often cycle to places and use it for that. Not everyday, but almost. Don't think I am the only one who regularly uses it.

      I sometimes go without having a dump for a whole day, but I'd still expect a flat which sells for the same price of two similar ones to come with a usable crapper.

    2. Andrew Harvey
      Thumb Up

      Re: Of the people commenting on this thread..

      I'm an iPhone fan. I don't use GPS every day. But we HAD (I still have as I'm resisting IOS6) a decent app with reasonably good maps, good satellite imagery and street view. WTF did Apple - who, as someone has already pointed out, have a lot of dosh in the bank - go and bugger that up?

      You sound you rarely/never use the app - in which case you obviously don't care. Fine. But it IS a "story" as you put it - 'cos it's a mighty step backwards.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Of the people commenting on this thread..

        You still have - load google maps in a browser - save to home page - done. This is not a story as the solution is so trivial. I actually prefer the Apple maps - much newer mapping and everywhere I have tested I'd say they were as good / better (for having much newer data).

  20. John Bailey
    Happy

    Perhaps they need to go old school.. Both hands and a flashlight app.

  21. Anonymous Coward
    Megaphone

    Better if they spent their time on OpenStreetMap

    Wouldn't it be a better world if rather than focussing on some proprietary Apple mapping software, they spent their time adding to OpenStreetMap instead? Wishful thinking!

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Better if they spent their time on OpenStreetMap

      Yes, but Apple (Google, MS etc, etc etc) don't do 'better worlds', just 'bigger profits'.

      Think exactly the same - you know it makes (financial) sense.

  22. MJI Silver badge

    Spock & McCoy

    Why are they supposed to do the maps?

    Why not the red shirts?

    Or do they die too easily?

    1. Isendel Steel
      Coat

      Re: Spock & McCoy

      Because they would be logical and give a damn ?

      The red shirts are just disposable - probably being used to hold back the tide of disappointed customers..

  23. Gil Grissum
    Pint

    All I can say is that if the Note2 lands at Sprint, this iPhone 4S and Apple Maps will get sold to subsidize purchase of the Note 2. I will only tolerate Apple maps until my 2013 upgrade and it will most certainly NOT be an iPhone 5S.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Ever tried just going to maps.google.com in your browser and putting the icon on the desktop - wow it takes all of 10 seconds.

      1. hitmouse

        Ever try figuring out how to fix all the location-aware apps and address book that are tied to the system default maps? I bet you can't figure that out in even 11 seconds.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Note 2 = gorillaphone. The Note was big enough and this the 2 is a bit bigger. Just don't call it a phablet.

  24. Big_Ted
    Thumb Up

    I see

    Google have now added streetview to mobile web App in browser

    Also The New York Times has reported they will have a standalone app by the end of the year.....

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-19832905

  25. We're all in it together

    I'm lost with all this banter

    But not with my map app.

    Just a quick question so I can catch up on gossip. Are there any good things on the iPhone 5?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: I'm lost with all this banter

      Well it's got a bigger screen (nice for the extra row of icons), it's about 20% lighter and 20% thinner which is one of the first things you will notice. It's quicker as well.

      1. DAN*tastik

        Re: I'm lost with all this banter

        Those 20 grams make all the difference - you can add an extra key to your keyring, or put a sweet in your pockets and you won't hurt your back straining for the added weight.

        You have the previous version of their mobile, and your handbag is so full you can't fit that useful cardboard bookmark in it? Get yourself the 5!

  26. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    People say this stuff as if no-one else other than Google can do maps - the fact is for many people Apple Maps is just fine - it's quicker and the mapping is more up to date. I'd rather see more competition rather than Google, Google, Google...

    1. hazydave
      Stop

      Something's not right

      There used to be two major SatNav turn-by-turn database companies: TeleAtlas and NavTeq. If you used a dedicated SatNav device, like a Garmin or a TomTom, you used one of these databases. Still do. If you used Google Maps, same thing... at some point in time, Google had worked with either company.

      Then stuff happened. Nokia decided that SatNav would become a standard feature of smartphones. Makes sense... various government mandate the GPS chip anyway... the rest is just "a simple matter of software", eh? So Nokia tried to buy TeleAtlas. TomTom got wind of that, and bought them first. So Nokia grabbed NavTeq. This upset Google, already concerned over the limits imposed on their license mapping data -- they had big plans. So Google stats driving these mapping vans around, building their own database.

      There are a few others... crowdsourced databases like those of Open StreetMaps and Waze. These, of course, are build by drivers using related mapping applications, submitting corrections, POIs, etc.

      Now, according to one of the Waze founders, Google currently has the best maps. While I'm happy to defer to his judgement, I have used other SatNavs for years, dedicated units, and only occasionally hit the sort of errors being demonstrated on Apple Maps. And here's the mystery: Apple claims to be using data from TeleAtlas/TomTom and OSM. If so, what's the deal? Does TomTom have a special priced" Maps for Schmucks" database? Or is this intentional.. Apple just abusing customers to stay at the top of the tech news cycle for a couple of extra weeks. Sure, fire away Apple Fanbois ... Apple does put you all through their new product release madness twice a year... entirely orchestrated, entirely avoidable.

  27. mickey mouse the fith
    Trollface

    Blueshirts? brownshirts more like

    It would be great to report a load of apple stores in the wrong place and put them up the top of mountains or in the middle of dark forests. It might show them the error of their penny pinching ways. I wonder how automated the process is?

    If its fully auto, and Apple are trusting the great unwashed to not piss about and locate mcdonalds in the sea or their house on the moon, then they are quite deluded.

    Anyone actually put false info into it and seen it appear in the maps app? .I cant try as I have no ios6 device, maybe il borrow one from a friend one pissed saturday night and see where it goes.

  28. Caltharian
    Trollface

    I thought that Apples main selling point was "It just works" and that was why you had to pay twice as much as the hardware would cost you if sourced yourself

    1. hazydave

      It still is... kinda

      They did say "it just works"... that's the Free Dictionary's definition #6 for just (adv): simply, certainly. But at the new Apple, they're trying hard to keep to tradition. So you can still use "it just works" in all honesty. They're just shifting up to definition #3: by a narrow margin, barely.

  29. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Not just the data

    Putting things in completely the wrong place is bad enough to be sure, but the quality of search makes even the things they have got right impossible to find. Querying for a town name in another country while focussed on an area of the map tends to take me to either something with a vaguely similar name, or draws a complete blank - even though the place actually exists and is named in Maps.

    While focussed on Dallas, TX a search for "Delhi" brought up a local Indian restaurant, adding "India" to the query made it draw a blank. Google might make the first mistake occasionally, although it would probably suggest the city name as well, but I've rarely seen it short of some form of suggestion for a name, even misspells or very obscure.

    Perhaps there's a clue in the fact the iTunes store search is vile too - not even up to Amazon's low standards. Their site search has always been lousy in the support section - they just don't seem to do search well at all, and from that low starting point its hard to see how they will get maps up to an acceptable standard (read Google maps circa 2008) in 5 or 10 years if they have to reinvent search to do it.

    A shame in many ways. I don't like the look of the satellite imaging colourwise, but for a few moments of novelty the 3d cities bit is actually pretty well done in most places, works well if somewhat clunky, but seems to take an age to render. Cook's suggestion to use X, Y or Z apps - until they fix it was just laughable. They should just stick their hand in their poockets and pay Googles Danegeld. Apple always say its about user experience, well here's a chance to prove it.

  30. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    If the reports are correct Apple have paid over 2bn in the last 4 years and as volumes sold and devices in use increase that will be even more - it's a lot of change to spend fixing / making their maps better!

    Thing is you get the best of both worlds - use Google Maps (10 second fix) or Apple Maps - what's all the hoo-ha about when the fix is that easy?

  31. Confuciousmobil
    Unhappy

    Biggest disappointment ...

    Is not just the errors - which can be fixed, but we have been used to Google maps which is great.

    Satellite view - try zooming to Brighton, or just about anywhere on the south coast. On Apples maps you can't. You can on Google Maps.

    Google Maps has Streetview, although someone earlier said it wasn't available on iOS it has been there since the introduction of iOS4.0 and is great on the iPhone and iPad. That has been taken away from us.

    The search facility just doesn't work in Apple Maps. e.g. I had to go to 40 Bank Street the other day. If you type that into Google Maps it takes you to the correct building in Canary Wharf. The same search in Apple Maps suggests 40 Cank Street in Leicester. Nearly all searches fail to locate the correct address yet I have never had a problem with Google Maps.

    We all know that Google couldn't license turn-by-turn navigation to Apple but surely anyone who wants turn-by-turn they use a proper Sat Nav app anyway rather than the poor implementation in either Googleor Apple Maps.

    It doesn't work properly on the iPhone4 anyway (not sure about the 4S) as, apart from no voice guidance) it fails to stop the screen going blank (it does in the iPhone 5) so they have taken away a lot of functionality, given us inaccurate maps for what?

    Apple have seriously dropped the ball on this one.

    For those, including Tim Cook, that say we can still use m.google.maps -that lacks Streetview and is nowhere near as usable as the Google Maps app that we have been used to.

    IOS6 is major downgrade Apple have released and I would seriously advise anyone who uses maps on their device to not upgrade.

    But Apple are already releasing upgrades to their other apps that won't install unless you have iOS6.

    I love my Apple devices but this could be a major factor in my next phone being my first non-iPhone for a long time.

  32. Ascylto
    Big Brother

    23456

    If Browett has his way there'll be ONE blueshirt left in the country but he will know about Maps (so long as you've paid the £39.99 to be covered).

  33. mhenriday
    Boffin

    Blue shirts ?!!

    Are you certain, Ms Leach, that the use of that term, with its unpleasant connotations, is not actionable ? Are not these employees - like the brilliant chap who heard two customers conversing in Farsi in an Apple temple in the United States and refused to sell them a fondleslab with a half-eaten apple on it - supposed to be referred to as «Geniuses» ?...

    Henri

  34. Tim Bates

    Get over it or get a different product!

    Apple complainers have a choice to make - either get over the problem or simply use a different product such as:

    * another mapping app for their existing iPhone

    * a dedicated GPS nav unit

    * dare I say, Ye Olde paper street map

    * any number of other brand phones that have working maps

    No one forced anyone to submit to Apple. Those who don't like it are free to leave (for now anyway - after the Samsung retrial things might change).

  35. Confuciousmobil

    Exactly..

    You are right Tim, people will choose other devices. Apple did have, by far, the best devices but with this crippled map app they have made it far less so.

    Google have, at least, responded by adding street view to the web app but it is far slower and less integrated than the google maps we have all come to know and love in iOS4/5

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