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Jeff Wexler

The miserable state of MAPS app in iOS6

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Anyone using the Maps app in iOS6 knows there are serious problems, particularly compared to the previous Google Maps on the iPhone. Here you can read yet another article that sheds some more light on this issue.

Apple's Split with Google Over iOS Maps Driven by Turn-by-Turn Navigation Dispute

Wednesday September 26, 2012 12:27 pm PDT by Eric Slivka

Reports about the high-profile split between Apple and Google that saw Apple replace its Google-powered Maps app for iOS with its own solution have continued to trickle out, with AllThingsD now reporting that the lack of turn-by-turn directions on Google's Maps app for iOS was the key motivator for Apple.

[M]ultiple sources familiar with Apple’s thinking say the company felt it had no choice but to replace Google maps with its own because of a disagreement over a key feature: Voice-guided turn-by-turn driving directions.

Spoken turn-by-turn navigation has been a free service offered through Google’s Android mobile OS for a few years now. But it was never part of the deal that brought Google’s maps to iOS. And Apple very much wanted it to be. Requiring iPhone users to look directly at handsets for directions and manually move through each step while Android users enjoyed native voice-guided instructions put Apple at a clear disadvantage in the mobile space. And having chosen Google as its original mapping partner, the iPhone-maker was now in a position where an arch rival was calling the shots on functionality important to the iOS maps feature set.

Apple reportedly pushed hard for voice navigation in Google's maps on iOS, but Google was unwilling to hand over the functionality without concessions from Apple. As detailed by other sources, Google was seeking greater control over the mapping experience on the iPhone, such as Google branding and Google Latitude integration, concessions Apple was unwilling to make.

ios_6_iphone_ipad_maps.jpg

Combined with the deterioration of the overall Apple-Google relationship and Apple's concerns that Google was collecting too much information from iOS users, Apple ramped up its mapping efforts in order to bring its own turn-by-turn directions to the device, ultimately deciding that it could afford to do away entirely with Google's maps.

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I've been using an app called Waze for GPS purposes, and it's been great. It is a combination of a GPS program and a sort of social networking/user aggregated information to plan out your routes and change it on the fly depending on what others are reporting on the roads. You can report things like traffic, hazards on the road, police, etc . . . and others using the program will benefit from it.

I was very skeptical at first, but it has become my go to GPS unit.

That said, I did really like the Android turn by turn navigation with Google Maps.

Marc

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I've been enjoying the new Maps app honestly, but there's only one thing I wish they would change and that's the choice of wording they use for certain directions. Listening to Siri tell you directions can be confusing when you hear, "Take exit for CA 4 to i5 south". When you're not actually able to read this (eyes on road), it sounds like you're supposed to take exit 4 CA 4 to i5 south. So..... you end up looking around for exit 4 that won't exist. It's a bit distracting and had me in a panic a few times already. I hope for some better choice of wording in the next update.

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I've been using an app called Waze for GPS purposes, and it's been great. It is a combination of a GPS program and a sort of social networking/user aggregated information to plan out your routes and change it on the fly depending on what others are reporting on the roads. You can report things like traffic, hazards on the road, police, etc . . . and others using the program will benefit from it.

I was very skeptical at first, but it has become my go to GPS unit.

That said, I did really like the Android turn by turn navigation with Google Maps.

Marc

Waze is fabulous, especially the dynamic re-routing. Once you switch off the game that's integrated into the app and change some of the social networking parameters it rocks. It searches the Waze map database, Yelp, Google, Bing, the Yellow Pages database, 4Square and the phone's on-board address book so it can find pretty much anything. User road condition reporting also means it's extremely accurate calculating travel times. On a recent and particularly awful Washington morning rush hour, my normal route to the day's location was estimated to take 1 3/4 hours, approximately double the normal rush hour time . Waze took me a way I wouldn't have thought of on my own that got me there in about an hour.

I too miss the stock Android nav app but not the POS phone it ran on.

Best regards,

Jim

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"Tim Cook Apologizes For Apple Maps, Points To Competitive Alternatives | TechCrunch"

To our customers,

At Apple, we strive to make world-class products that deliver the best experience possible to our customers. With the launch of our new Maps last week, we fell short on this commitment. We are extremely sorry for the frustration this has caused our customers and we are doing everything we can to make Maps better.

We launched Maps initially with the first version of iOS. As time progressed, we wanted to provide our customers with even better Maps including features such as turn-by-turn directions, voice integration, Flyover and vector-based maps. In order to do this, we had to create a new version of Maps from the ground up.

There are already more than 100 million iOS devices using the new Apple Maps, with more and more joining us every day. In just over a week, iOS users with the new Maps have already searched for nearly half a billion locations. The more our customers use our Maps the better it will get and we greatly appreciate all of the feedback we have received from you.

While we’re improving Maps, you can try alternatives by downloading map apps from the App Store like Bing, MapQuest and Waze, or use Google or Nokia maps by going to their websites and creating an icon on your home screen to their web app.

Everything we do at Apple is aimed at making our products the best in the world. We know that you expect that from us, and we will keep working non-stop until Maps lives up to the same incredibly high standard.

Tim Cook

Apple’s CEO

http://techcrunch.com/2012/09/28/tim-cook-apologizes-for-apple-maps-points-to-competitive-alternatives/

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I don't know how anybody could be enjoying the new maps.

It's complete shite.

Shitty traffic notifications are just one of the problems.

Apples arrogance once again is the root of removing a great app from their os.

And to top it off, no proper YouTube app either.

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Apples arrogance once again is the root of removing a great app from their os.

And to top it off, no proper YouTube app either.

Please, do a little research. There have been lots of articles written, official and unofficial, from independent writers and from Apple, that have discussed at length the reasons behind the current Maps app in iOS6. There is as well the formal and public apology by Tim Cook for Apple's screw up and the suggestion of alternative products while Apple gets its act together. Does this sound like arrogance to you?

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Apple Launches New App Store Feature Section for Alternative Maps

Friday September 28, 2012 10:23 am PDT by Eric Slivka

Following this morning's release of an open letter from Tim Cook apologizing for issues with the new Apple-driven Maps app in iOS 6 and mentioning some alternative map options available to users, Apple has also added a new featured section to the App Store highlighting some of those map alternatives.

iphone_alternative_maps.jpg

A host of alternative apps ranging from free to Magellan's $49.99 "RoadMate USA" are available from such brands as Waze, Mapquest, Garmin, Bing, and MotionX.

Apple's embrace of alternative map options seems to be a sign that the company is taking criticism of its own offering seriously, although directing users to downloads through the App Store is still of benefit to Apple. Cook's letter did, however, also promote web-based alternatives such as Google's and Nokia's maps.

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Please, do a little research. There have been lots of articles written, official and unofficial, from independent writers and from Apple, that have discussed at length the reasons behind the current Maps app in iOS6. There is as well the formal and public apology by Tim Cook for Apple's screw up and the suggestion of alternative products while Apple gets its act together. Does this sound like arrogance to you?

Yes,it is arrogance.

In wanting to have voice navigation, and wanting to play the big powerfull apple by not wanting to accept googles terms, at least in the short term. They instead went with a completely subpar version of maps.

Lame.

How about showing how sorry they really are, and releasing an update with google maps back in the os, and offer their own crappy version as an app.

Anything else is just lip service.

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Apples arrogance once again is the root of removing a great app from their os. And to top it off, no proper YouTube app either.

It's clear to me that this is a Google problem, not an Apple problem. If Apple wouldn't agree to all the compromises Google was insisting on with Google Maps, then they had no choice but to try to create their own Maps app. Don't assume that Google wasn't being even more arrogant and difficult. Often in cases like this, there's a lot of bad attitudes going on with both companies involved.

What is really shoddy is that Apple clearly shipped this app out without enough bug testing, and that's pretty unforgivable. Guaranteed, Steve Jobs would be livid about something like this if he were still running the company. I am impressed that at least Tim Cook owned up to the situation and quickly gave people alternatives they could use until the Apple Maps app is fixed.

I ain't a-gonna give up iOS 5 until this problem is solved.

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Nope. this is purely an Apple problem.

Accordion to several sources, Apple still had a year left on the Google Maps license.

Yes, but Apple was not pleased with the additional user information Google wanted to collect, as well as overlays and other issues that Google insisted on implementing in order to bring turn-by-turn and voice navigation / Siri integration to the i-device google maps. Both parties unwilling to budge, Apple made their own map app to get the features it's user base wanted, without having to bow to Google demands.

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Apple made their own map app to get the features it's user base wanted, without having to bow to Google demands.

They could have easily kept google Mps for another year undercthe current license, until their own App was working properly.

They could have included their own app as a separate app, with the voice guided turn by turn.

That way, when their app got you lost, you could use the Google App.

Also, the traffic overlay is useless on the current app.

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Why people will always give Apple a free pass on every single crap decision thy makers beyond me.

If this was MS or Android, people would not be so kind.

Also, now that there is no YouTube integration AND no Flash, I have been unable to see numerous posted YouTube links.

Thanks Apple. Another brilliant OS6 move.

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Huh? Give me one link, google/youtube is encoding in h264/mp4 since 2007, therefore compatible with the iPhone iPad. I never used the YouTube app before unless the iOS pointed at it. Always looked it up in safari.

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Huh? Give me one link, google/youtube is encoding in h264/mp4 since 2007, therefore compatible with the iPhone iPad. I never used the YouTube app before unless the iOS pointed at it. Always looked it up in safari.

Pretty much every YouTube clip linked to on this thread, gives me the message to download flash.

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Pretty much every YouTube clip linked to on this thread, gives me the message to download flash.

Aha, I see your point, granted, it's not working, BUT, actually it's a bug in the embedding code this forum uses. Seen it before. It does not say the file actually can not play on the iPhone. You remembered it working well with iOS 5? I do remember having troubles with this forums YouTube embeds as well. Im currently on an ipad therefore can not look into the source code to point out the exact flaw. Anyways, to show you it plays YouTube vids well, see this link: http://gmailblog.blogspot.nl/2012/07/video-chat-face-to-face-to-face-with.html

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Apple Launches New App Store Feature Section for Alternative Maps

<snip>

A host of alternative apps ranging from free to Magellan's $49.99 "RoadMate USA" are available from such brands as Waze, Mapquest, Garmin, Bing, and MotionX.

Apple's embrace of alternative map options seems to be a sign that the company is taking criticism of its own offering seriously, although directing users to downloads through the App Store is still of benefit to Apple. Cook's letter did, however, also promote web-based alternatives such as Google's and Nokia's maps.

A note to those who will be shopping around for a replacement nav and maps app: I did a trial of the free apps that were available a while ago and the Mapquest database had not been upgraded in at least a couple of years. If you have or had a stand-alone GPS that you liked, you might want to consider the iPhone app offered by that company if you're willing to pay. If reliability is key remember that while your phone's GPS will function when you can't get to the cellular network, the maps database for that app won't be available unless your app stores maps on your phone. I did a lot of work in rural West Virginia last year and discovered once you get out of town and away from interstate highways you'll be out of luck. My old Tomtom unit is always in the glovebox as a consequence.

Best regards,

Jim

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Why people will always give Apple a free pass on every single crap decision thy makers beyond me.

If this was MS or Android, people would not be so kind.

Also, now that there is no YouTube integration AND no Flash, I have been unable to see numerous posted YouTube links.

Thanks Apple. Another brilliant OS6 move.

Because Apple has done a better job of quickly correcting their mistakes, generally faster and with a better solution than their counterparts.

Flash is going the way of the dodo and and you can download a free YouTube app. There were numerous good reasons why Flash was not integrated into iOS.

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They could have easily kept google Mps for another year undercthe current license, until their own App was working properly.

They could have included their own app as a separate app, with the voice guided turn by turn.

That way, when their app got you lost, you could use the Google App.

Also, the traffic overlay is useless on the current app.

You seem to have all the answers. Apple should bring you on in a leadership role. Let us know how that works out for you.

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They could have easily kept google Mps for another year undercthe current license, until their own App was working properly.

They could have included their own app as a separate app, with the voice guided turn by turn.

They could have, but they didn't. That's a poor decision by your count, but two map apps on the iPhone, one from a competitor 'just in case ours goes bad'? Unlikely. Apple is too proud.

I'm not defending Apple at all, on fact, I'm still on iOS 5 for the sole reason of retaining Google Maps.

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Yes,it is arrogance.

In wanting to have voice navigation, and wanting to play the big powerfull apple by not wanting to accept googles terms, at least in the short term. They instead went with a completely subpar version of maps.

Lame.

How about showing how sorry they really are, and releasing an update with google maps back in the os, and offer their own crappy version as an app.

Anything else is just lip service.

First off, there never was a google maps app for iPhone. It has always been an app written by Apple. Until now the data was pulled from google servers, but it was an Apple app. Now it pulls data from TomTom and a bunch of other companies.

Any info on the details are rumors at this point, and probably will be. Google flat out said a few years ago that they were going to retain turn by turn for Android.

If you are going to go by rumors, Google was also harvesting data to use for advertising in some way Apple didn't like. There is that understanding that when you don't pay cash for a google app, you are paying with your info (email content, where you drive etc). Same goes for a lot of companies these days. No surprise there.

+1 on Waze. It's free, and has the fastest rerouting for traffic that I know of. I let it run when driving just to feed traffic data to the servers and help out other people.

I had an Android phone till the iPhone5 came out and I usually used Waze instead of the free app. The major upside to Apple improving the map is that you can click an address in your calendar and go straight into maps, and then select navigate. With either phone, I would have to copy and paste the address into Waze.

It seems Apple was not collecting the data from the maps app all these years. A lot of the precision in Google maps is due to years of use and feedback from users. Many of those people on iPhones. Seeing how maps and navigation is a major selling point of smartphones now, it would be crazy for Apple to have their major (only?) competitor controlling that feature, especially after publicly saying they will always cripple the iPhone version.

Google is going to scramble to make a maps app. The reason it doesn't exist already is, again, that a Google Maps app never existed on iOS. They just supplied the data. Google makes money when you use the web and they have a hook in that. Who knows what the deal was between them and Apple, but the biggest thing to Google is to get hooks in your web usage. That's why they are a hugely successful advertising company. EVERYTHING they do is to tailor ads to customers so they are more effective. I'm not saying that is bad, but it puts a perspective on their products. It appears Google just learned of Apple going rogue at WWDC in June, and presumably since then could have started to write an app, but have not finished it yet. Those rumors of Google having an app that Apple isn't approving seem to be bad reporting based on a odd off the cuff quote from google.

Apple allows 3rd party maps and nav, so I don't see why they won't allow Google to have one. They allow Chrome as an alternative browser to their Safari. The question is will the Apple one always be the default one when you click an address in a web browser, calendar, email or iMessage. I am guessing it will be. Android sort of let you pick a 3rd party default, but that somehow rarely worked for me. The google maps was the one that usually launched no matter what I selected. That may be an OS issue more than anything, who knows.

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I have been using the Apple maps a bit in the last week and have not had an issue finding a location yet. I have *mostly* been using it for places I know how to get to, so I know if it is taking me totally wrong. I had a Waze issue yesterday where the last turn was wrong, but I was in rural farm country in PA, and I am not surprised the map didn't have addresses of farms 100% right. It reminded me of Yahoo! maps a few years ago where the last turn was almost always wrong.

Obviously one key failure is enough to ruin your day. I have been looking for my old Garmin GPS as a backup, but can't for the life of me find it. Something to be said for smartphones in general that I don't think I used it once in the last 2 years.

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They could have, but they didn't. That's a poor decision by your count, but two map apps on the iPhone, one from a competitor 'just in case ours goes bad'? Unlikely. Apple is too proud.

Except their response to the fiasco is just that.

Download a separate app.

Btw, those needing voice guiding where here's no cell reception, co-pilot is the way to o. It downloads and stores the map of North America on your iPad.

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