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Major Backlash Looms For Apple's New Maps App 466

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the the-all-embracing-googleplex dept.
Hugh Pickens writes "Michael DeGusta writes that Apple's new Maps app is the very first item on their list of major new features in iOS 6, but for many iPhone and iPad users around the world Apple's new maps are going to be a major disappointment as the Transit function will be lost in 51 countries, the Traffic function will be lost in 24 countries, and the Street View function will be lost in 41 countries. 'In total, 63 countries with a combined population of 4.5 billion people will be without one or more of these features they previously had in iOS,' writes DeGusta. 'Apple is risking upsetting 65% of the world's population, seemingly without much greater purpose than speeding the removal of their rival Google from iOS. Few consumers care about such battles though, nor should they have to.' The biggest losers will be Brazil, India, Taiwan, and Thailand (population: 1.5 billion) which overnight will go from being countries with every maps feature (transit, traffic, and street view) to countries with none of those features, nor any of the new features, flyover and turn-by-turn directions. Apple's maps are clearly behind in some key areas, but they will presumably continue to improve over time. Google has committed to making their maps available everywhere, so it seems likely Google will release their own iOS maps app soon, as they did with YouTube, which has similarly been removed from iOS 6." But what percentage of people who actually buy iPhones lost these features?
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Major Backlash Looms For Apple's New Maps App

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  • by Jerslan (1088525) * on Wednesday September 19, 2012 @12:16PM (#41388353)
    ... than being dependent on their biggest competitor.

    If they had waited until they had *all* the features in *all* countries to roll it out it could mean several more years of Google Maps, which had a severely limited API on the iPhone. The new maps app may be limited, but it's also far more extensible. IIRC they added the ability for an app to register as a data-source for transit or bike paths or walking directions. That's something you couldn't do with the old API. This allows cities and/or transit companies to make their own apps that can account for train/bus schedule a lot more reliably. Maps have turned out to be a critical feature of Mobile OS's. Why wouldn't Apple want to have more direct control over what the Maps in their OS can and can't do?
  • Re:turn-by-turn (Score:4, Interesting)

    by coolmoose25 (1057210) on Wednesday September 19, 2012 @12:55PM (#41389055)
    I'm SOOOO tired of this "customer" vs. "product" false dichotomy. I'm one of Google's customers. They service me and I pay them by using their service and allow them to target me with unobtrusive ads. Apple, OTOH, pays lip service to it's "customers" by hyping the fact that they now offer a phone that can get 4g service, which I've had for almost 2 years now. They still make money off of advertising, making me a "product" in your eyes, but better still, they charge you to buy their hardware, and their software, at exorbitant prices across the board compared to the other alternatives. They innovate by rounding the corners off their devices.

    But back to the main point, when did I become the product just because a service is provided to me free of charge via an advertising model? Does this mean that I'm also a Slashdot product? Am I also a Wolfram Alpha product? Am I a product of the landowner who puts up a billboard next to the freeway I drive down?

    Jeez louise, get a grip man. You already sold your soul to Google... does it really matter if they know where you go? They'll probably do something really evil, like put up an ad for a BBQ place that you didn't know was there, but that you'd really like to check out.
  • Worse... (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Animats (122034) on Wednesday September 19, 2012 @01:30PM (#41389627) Homepage

    Yes, Apple omitting a London Tube station from a map of London is kind of a killer fail. The images show the user about 100m from a Central Line tube station, but Apple is going to make him walk about a mile to another station.

    Is turn-by-turn navigation that important in a handheld device? That's more of a feature for a car-mounted device. You shouldn't be looking at a smartphone while driving, anyway.

  • They are doing exactly the same thing they did when Steve Jobs left the first time.

    They have become scared, call minor change 'innovation' and loosing focus on the product.

    I hope I ma wrong, but 5 is exactly what I said it would be, and I suspect after the 1 years anniversary of Jobs death, there will have been a noticeable lessening of momentum at Apple.

  • by mark-t (151149) <[markt] [at] [lynx.bc.ca]> on Wednesday September 19, 2012 @02:26PM (#41390521) Journal
    Ironically, however, the version of Google maps as accessed via Safari on the iPhone, does not seem to have any facility for showing Street View.

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