Apple highlights third-party mapping applications in iOS App Store

Posted:
in iPhone edited January 2014
A new featured link on the iOS App Store invites users to "Find maps for your iPhone," and lists a number of paid and free alternatives to Apple's own Maps application in iOS 6.

Find Maps


The new link appeared on the App Store on Friday, after Apple Chief Executive Tim Cook himself highlighted competing options in an apology to customers. Since the launch of iOS 6 with Apple's all-new mapping solution, users have complained that the software is substandard.

"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," Cook wrote.

In addition to the public apology, the new "Find maps for your iPhone" is the first featured link on the iOS App Store curated by Apple. It offers a list of 13 alternative mapping applications available for download. They are:
Find Maps

Most notably absent from the list is Google Maps, because a dedicated application from the search company is not yet available on the App Store. Google is said to be working on a standalone application, but in the meantime users can still visit the Google Maps website, as Cook suggested, to access the service. The popular Street View functionality is not available, but is expected to launch within the next two weeks.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 56


    Such frigging crap.

  • Reply 2 of 56
    mstonemstone Posts: 11,510member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post



    The popular Street View functionality is not available, but is expected to launch within the next two weeks.


    So if Google is going to be able to launch a version of Street View in the mobile web version that does not rely on Flash, perhaps they will also incorporate that version into their regular desktop browser map application. That will be quite the accomplishment if they only use HTML 5. With the old iOS app they had Objective C as a programming resource to provide multimedia support for the Street View app, but minus that it will be interesting to see how they overcome the interactivity issues of using straight HTML.

  • Reply 3 of 56

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post


    Such frigging crap.



    Huh? It's crap that Apple is highlighting good alternatives to customers not satisfied with the built in option, or crap that Apple downgraded the quality of the built in maps app and has openly admitted as such? I'm confused.

  • Reply 4 of 56


    Originally Posted by mstone View Post

    So if Google is going to be able to launch a version of Street View in the mobile web version that does not rely on Flash, perhaps they will also incorporate that version into their regular desktop browser map application. That will be quite the accomplishment if they only use HTML 5.


     


    Still think they should bring back QuickTime VR for that. image

  • Reply 5 of 56

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by mstone View Post


    So if Google is going to be able to launch a version of Street View in the mobile web version that does not rely on Flash, perhaps they will also incorporate that version into their regular desktop browser map application. That will be quite the accomplishment if they only use HTML 5. With the old iOS app they had Objective C as a programming resource to provide multimedia support for the Street View app, but minus that it will be interesting to see how they overcome the interactivity issues of using straight HTML.



    If I'm not mistaken, don't they forego Flash in the OpenGL version of their maps? Granted, you must use Chrome and enable OpenGL Maps first, but I'm pretty sure everything is HTML5 at that point.

  • Reply 6 of 56
    Why don't they just put Google Maps back? Or is that too obvious of a question?
  • Reply 7 of 56
    An admission of problems but not the end of the world. Google Maps was pretty ropey in its early implementation too. Just a shame Apple bragged about it rather than quietly developing it. Then again, Safari was pretty buggy in its first couple of versions and now it is pretty robust and quick - a serious browser. Maps will get better but it is, agreed, a disappointment in its current form esp in the UK.
  • Reply 8 of 56
    mstonemstone Posts: 11,510member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by bstring View Post



    Why don't they just put Google Maps back? Or is that too obvious of a question?


    Google maps never was an App store app and it was apparently a contractual partnership between Apple and Google which more than likely does not currently have any provision for selling or distributing Google maps from the App Store among other significant licensing agreements regarding the data, which are not supported in the App Store model.

  • Reply 9 of 56


    Originally Posted by bstring View Post

    Why don't they just put Google Maps back? Or is that too obvious of a question?


     


    It's too pointless a question.






    Originally Posted by Petemac View Post

    Just a shame Apple bragged about it rather than quietly developing it.


     



    Google never advertised their Maps in 2005. That never happened. No one could complain about Google back then because they said outright that their stuff was trash, but they also were never incorrect and did not miss a single road in a single town and had perfect satellite imagery for the entire world.

  • Reply 10 of 56
    saareksaarek Posts: 1,505member
    If they still have a year left with Google on the clock why not offer customers the choice of source from within the map app until that licence runs out. Problems immediately solved!

    It certainly would not be any more embarrassing than the fiasco so far!
  • Reply 11 of 56


    Originally Posted by saarek View Post

    If they still have a year left with Google on the clock why not offer customers the choice of source from within the map app until that licence runs out. Problems immediately solved!


     


    maps.google.com.


     


    Problem already solved, and without any pathetic backtracking.

  • Reply 12 of 56
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 23,955member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by saarek View Post



    If they still have a year left with Google on the clock why not offer customers the choice of source from within the map app until that licence runs out. Problems immediately solved!

    It certainly would not be any more embarrassing than the fiasco so far!


    It makes sense to me to do so a year in advance. Certainly Google knew Apple as planning it's own mapping, but not this soon. By moving the timeline up to where Google didn't expect it they avoided being compared directly to Google Maps as a TBT standalone product on iOS devices as soon as Apple Maps were released. Google didn't have the time to finish one that would pass muster with Apple users or Apple themselves. That's a huge benefit for a new product.

  • Reply 13 of 56
    jragostajragosta Posts: 10,473member
    saarek wrote: »
    If they still have a year left with Google on the clock why not offer customers the choice of source from within the map app until that licence runs out. Problems immediately solved!
    It certainly would not be any more embarrassing than the fiasco so far!

    Nonsense.

    First, let's say they did what you suggest. A year from now, they drop Google Maps. All the haters would be screaming twice as loud.

    Second, it adds to confusion.

    Third, it means fewer people using Apple Maps which means that it's going to improve more slowly.

    Fourth, it weakens Apple's branding.

    Fifth (possibly), it means that Apple has to continue to pay Google for a service that doesn't meet their needs.

    I really suspect that Apple's management team knows how to run a company a lot better than you do.
  • Reply 14 of 56

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by saarek View Post



    If they still have a year left with Google on the clock why not offer customers the choice of source from within the map app until that licence runs out. Problems immediately solved!

    It certainly would not be any more embarrassing than the fiasco so far!


     


    Actually, it would.


     


    By promoting alternative apps for the complainers to use, Apple can still continue to develop and improve upon their maps.  Myself, I'll be using Apple maps, as will millions of others users.  Yes, millions.  I suspect the number of complainers out of 100,000,000 downloads is probably just a few %.  This is my opinion, i have no data to support.


     


    Apple will not go back, nor should they.  Quite frankly, I'm a little disappointed that Tim has apologized and now promoted alternatives.  Either would have been fine, not both.  I hate to use the cliche' but Steve really wouldn't have done it this way.  

  • Reply 15 of 56
    macrulezmacrulez Posts: 2,455member


    deleted

  • Reply 16 of 56

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post


     


    It's too pointless a question.



    Really? Why?

  • Reply 17 of 56
    saareksaarek Posts: 1,505member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by allenbf View Post


     


    Actually, it would.


     


    By promoting alternative apps for the complainers to use, Apple can still continue to develop and improve upon their maps.  Myself, I'll be using Apple maps, as will millions of others users.  Yes, millions.  I suspect the number of complainers out of 100,000,000 downloads is probably just a few %.  This is my opinion, i have no data to support.


     


    Apple will not go back, nor should they.  Quite frankly, I'm a little disappointed that Tim has apologized and now promoted alternatives.  Either would have been fine, not both.  I hate to use the cliche' but Steve really wouldn't have done it this way.  



     


    I assume you are in the USA? The problem is far more pronounced outside of Apple's favourite market, in my office today 7 individual non technical people were complaining about the maps problem. These people do not want to have to download a load of apps to replace what was reliable core functionality, they do not want to browse to a website and have their battery nuked. From my own searches it feels like 90-95% of all shops/restaurant/etc are missing. With Maps it's all about the data, saying oh it will improve in time calm down is simply not good enough.

  • Reply 18 of 56


    Originally Posted by saarek View Post

    The problem is far more pronounced outside of Apple's favorite market…


     


    Huh. Sounds like Google at launch.

  • Reply 19 of 56

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by saarek View Post



    If they still have a year left with Google on the clock why not offer customers the choice of source from within the map app until that licence runs out. Problems immediately solved!

    It certainly would not be any more embarrassing than the fiasco so far!




    What's embarrassing is that people continue to complain.  Cook a has acknowledged there is a problem, he has stated they are working on it.  Continuing to bitch and moan is not helping the matter.  All that needs to be done now is report the problems and SHUT UP!

  • Reply 20 of 56
    "T-Cookie" should have included StreetView and Live Street View among the 3rd party apps in the Store available for download and use alongside iOS 6. The former is excellent, the latter passable.
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