Motorola Pokes Fun at Apple iOS 6 Users' Maps Misery
September 24, 2012 1:00 PM
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Meanwhile Apple is reportedly trying desperately to woo Google Maps engineers
Apple, Inc. (
) made a bold gamble deciding to kick Google Inc.'s (
) highly functional Google Maps app off its i-devices
with iOS 6
, in lieu of its own homegrown alternative. The move was perhaps foreshadowed by Apple's long-standing refusal to allow Google Maps the hardware API access necessary to do turn-by-turn navigation on the iPhone.
I. Apple Maps Woes Mar iPhone 5 Experience
Early builds of the iOS 6 Apple Maps were
full of flaws
. And while principle partner TomTom N.V. (
) -- who Apple gets most of its mapping database from -- promised to help fix the flaws, it looks like the version that launched with Apple iPhone 5 is still mediocre at best and
a nightmarish mess at worst
Cities were misplaced or worse yet wound up in the ocean. Requests for directions in major cities (e.g. New York City) were met with cryptic addresses. To sum up the prevailing sentiment
mobile analyst Galen Gruman
, "For the short term, I recommend you not use Apple Maps."
Apple Maps have some issues. [Image Source: Apple]
II. Scorned Google Chimes In
Google, whose Android operating system Apple has
called a "copycat"
partners have been sued
for not "innovating" enough, was quick to pounce on these reports.
The official Google+ account of Google's phonemaking
subsidiary Motorola Mobility
posted a picture
mocking Apple Maps as "iLost" and plugging Android's alternative:
[Image Source: Google+/Motorola Mobility]
The situation isn't looking pretty for Apple Maps. True, Apple owners can rest easy in knowing that Tim Cook and company (partially) drove the big bad Google off their prized i-Devices, but it is appearing a very Pyrrhic victory.
III. Apple is Recruiting ex-Google Maps Devs
, the dire situation has prompted Apple to begin trying to poach Google Maps engineers. The report quotes a source as saying:
Many of my coworkers at Google Maps eventually left when their contracts ended or on their own accord. One guy looked around for other GIS work and ended up at Apple when a recruiter contacted him. He had heard rumors for a while that Apple was going to develop its own in-house mapping platform, and given his experience at Google, he was an easy hire. Apple went out of their way to bring him down to Cupertino and he’s now paid handsomly as a GIS Analyst. Another coworker that was a project lead at Google Maps, left for the East Coast after his contract ended, and was recently contacted by an Apple recruiter. The position sounds like a product development manager position, and will pay him $85k+ and all the moving expenses from the East Coast. He’s gone through 2 rounds of interview and seems like a frontrunner to land that position.
Still, even as Apple moves a bit closer to keeping up with the Androids in terms of screen size and cellular modem technology, it's fallen farther behind on the Maps front -- a critical piece of functionality to today's Swiss Army Knife-esque smartphones.
One has to wonder whether the Maps mess will take a bit of the luster off the
otherwise polished product
. Early sales, however, have been unaffected as Apple's faithful fans helped it move
5 million units over the launch weekend
This article is over a month old, voting and posting comments is disabled
9/25/2012 9:44:15 AM
I have used multiple map apps for a while as none are perfect and especially when you hike in more remote or obscure locations you have to shop around for decent off-line Topo maps. The single best mapping app I found for the UK was 'UK Map' which enables you to download UK high resolution high scale Ordnance Survey map tiles free of charge and store them on your device and then later delete them if you want. So I keep high resolution tiles for my city permanently on my device and if I go somewhere to hike I download the maps before the trip.
MotionX GPS HD is another useful app that lets you download a variety of maps for remote areas, I used it recently for hiking in the mountains in the Balkans.
"Can anyone tell me what MobileMe is supposed to do?... So why the f*** doesn't it do that?" -- Steve Jobs
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