When Apple launched Maps as part of iOS 6 recently, users were largely pleased with the look but disappointed with its usability – which is kind of important when it comes to finding your way somewhere. Stories surfaced of absurd inaccuracies, you know, cities in the sea, farms labeled as airports, that sort of thing.
Apple has said the more that people use its Maps app, the better it will get. Meanwhile, Google is reportedly working on a new Maps app for iOS, but it could be a couple of months before it sees the light of day. This has left many iPhone users who’ve upgraded to iOS 6 and who used Google’s Maps app on a regular basis scratching around for a solution.
Of course, alternatives are available, but the whole Maps mess may have left a few iOS 6 users wishing they’d held off upgrading until either Apple sorts Maps or Google releases its own Maps app.
However, there’s some good news for those who’ve switched to using Google’s Maps mobile Web app – Street View functionality, which gives users a ground-level view of the immediate area, should be on its way in a couple of weeks. Apple’s Maps app offers no such feature.
The information comes courtesy of New York Times’ columnist David Pogue who, in a piece about Apple’s Maps misstep, tells how he used the Cupertino company’s new app to guide him to a speaking engagement, explaining that while both the GPS navigation screen and spoken directions were clear, they took him to the wrong location. He was late for his talk.
Apple’s Maps “may be the most embarrassing, least usable piece of software Apple has ever unleashed,” Pogue wrote.
He laments the loss of Street View on his handset, but says that “in two weeks” Google will be including it as part of its Maps mobile Web app. His information comes directly from the Mountain View company, he said.
It was reported on Wednesday that in its forthcoming iOS Maps app, Google intends to combine Google Earth with Maps, though there’s no clear indication as to when it might be ready.