Australian police also warn of safety concerns with Google Maps

Posted:
in iPhone edited January 2014
Apple's iOS 6 Maps aren't alone in giving users poor directions in Australia: Authorities have also warned that Google Maps can recommend potentially dangerous routes.

Police in the town of Colac, west of Melbourne, say that issues with Google Maps can put users' lives at risks when driving along Great Ocean Road and in souther Otways, according to a report from the Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Google Maps has reportedly sent drivers down Wild Dog Road, a one-way road not intended for heavy traffic.

The warning comes soon after police in Victoria separately cautioned that Apple's new iOS Maps application has caused a number of travelers to be stranded in the remote national park. A police bulletin said that over the past few weeks, a number of rescue operations were carried out as motorists became stranded in the Murray-Sunset National Park on their way to Mildura.

The area has poor cell phone coverage, which forced some travelers to walk long distances without food or water to call authorities.

Apple quickly responded to the issue and pushed out changes to its mapping software to accurately reflect the actual location of Mildura hours after the police bulletin gained international publicity.

Apple's iOS 6 Maps application has been a lightning rod for criticism since the software launched in September. General consensus has been that Apple's solution is inferior to the software it replaced, which was powered by Google Maps.

Maps


Both police notices in Australia make it clear that no mapping solution is perfect or 100 percent reliable. Most issues, however, are not usually life threatening, as in the case of a new airfield that was mistakenly placed in Dublin, Ireland in Apple's iOS 6 Maps. The issue prompted Minister for Justice Alan Shatter to write a tongue-in-cheek letter to Apple to bring attention to the issue, in which the town of Airfield was mistakenly labeled as an actual airfield.

"I know on occasion mistakes can be made and I am surprised to discover that Airfield, which is the centre of my constituency in Dundrum, has, in Apple's new operating system iOS 6 maps application, been designated with the image of an aircraft," Shatter wrote to Apple.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 48
    Why do I get the feeling that this won't get NEARLY the national press coverage as Apple's mistake?
  • Reply 2 of 48


    Nope. There are no problems with Google Maps. Ever. It is perfect. Apple was a whiny infant and removed God's Gift To Mapping from their OS¡

  • Reply 3 of 48


    Wait, I thought Mapgate was purely an Apple fail?  /s

     

  • Reply 4 of 48
    Boom there it is!
    I wonder what Samsung will say now?

    I am convinced that Apple Maps uses better technology architecture than Google and already looks better. Once Apple fixes data issues, Google Maps is toast. It will then be SIRI's turn to put Google search 6 feet under.

    Time will tell.
  • Reply 5 of 48
    GET ANOTHER BUCKET!
    We need more milk from this story!
  • Reply 6 of 48
    jfc1138jfc1138 Posts: 3,090member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by hittrj01 View Post



    Why do I get the feeling that this won't get NEARLY the national press coverage as Apple's mistake?


    ^this^

  • Reply 7 of 48
    irelandireland Posts: 17,547member
    I've submitted a number of fixes to mistakes on Google Maps over the past 5 years. I've used it about 5 times and it's been not 100% accurate every time. No exaggeration. It was way off for Lanzarote, when I went there. Every other occasion was in Ireland. Mapping is hard.

    The main thing Apple got wrong with Maps is it shipped it about a year too early. They should have employed 100 full time people to spend an extra year fixing it. It would have shipped in the iOS 7 develop preview in June 2013 far more polished. But... the damage has been done, they'll get over the bad PR eventually.
  • Reply 8 of 48
    ufwaufwa Posts: 64member
    The yahoo story needs to clarify things or maybe a local can clarify things.

    Is the issue a 1 way street or a 1 lane road not intended for heavy traffic/large vehicles.

    The quotes focus on the heavy traffic/large vehicles issue. At least that's what the concern is.

    Pulling up the road you get a 1 lane road.I can't find any signs found anywhere and its similar to rural mountain areas in the US where you share the road with people. A tour bus isn't a good idea.

    If its a 1 way street, google should be dinged like the one problem they had in SF.

    If its no big vehicles then the onus is on the driver. Apple/Google whoever is not a replacement for basic judgement.
  • Reply 9 of 48
    irelandireland Posts: 17,547member
    Time will tell.

    You should change your name to Mr. Time will tell.
  • Reply 10 of 48


    Shouldn't common sense be used when using any technology especially mapping

  • Reply 11 of 48
    jeffdmjeffdm Posts: 12,946member
    GPS units recommending inappropriate routes is an old story in general, I think people forget about them. I've heard of one where the GPS suggested driving up a staircase at a park. Another where someone drove off a dock because the directions didn't note the idiot user was supposed to wait for a ferry. I'm sure there are hundreds of other stories of varying inconvenience or danger, you're not supposed to trust the device uncritically, and you shouldn't depend on GPS over very out-of-the-way paths.

    Not only that, data can often be out of date. In my area, Navteq took a couple years to acknowledge a newly constructed road and bridge, and their data is used in several different GPS services, including Google.
  • Reply 12 of 48


    Yes, causing people to be stranded in the middle of nowhere 40 miles from your intended destination and making them walk miles to get rescued is EXCATLY the same as not indicating a one-way road.


     


    I don’t know how many times I have nearly died from dehydration because I went the wrong way on a street. Thank god for the rescue helicopter pilots, I don’t know what I would have done that time I went south on Madison Ave.  

  • Reply 13 of 48
    feynmanfeynman Posts: 1,087member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post



    The area has poor cell phone coverage, which forced some travelers to walk long distances without food or water to call authorities.


    This really is no fault of the Map provider. Whenever traveling long distances, especially in rural areas, I bring lots of snacks and water. I thought everyone else did this as well? Not to mention, I also have a second source of mapping and do my planning at home before getting on the road. 


     


    I thought this was all just common sense?

  • Reply 14 of 48


    Originally Posted by malta View Post

    Yes, causing people to be stranded in the middle of nowhere 40 miles from your intended destination and making them walk miles to get rescued…


     


    I really want to take this in a literal sense. Really want to do it.






    I don’t know how many times I have nearly died from dehydration because I went the wrong way on a street.



     


    Gotta be at least five.

  • Reply 15 of 48
    sflocalsflocal Posts: 4,428member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by malta View Post


    Yes, causing people to be stranded in the middle of nowhere 40 miles from your intended destination and making them walk miles to get rescued is EXCATLY the same as not indicating a one-way road.


     


    I don’t know how many times I have nearly died from dehydration because I went the wrong way on a street. Thank god for the rescue helicopter pilots, I don’t know what I would have done that time I went south on Madison Ave.  





    Grow up.



    If Maps was correct, and the car they were driving in the middle of a desert with no food/water breaks down, can we just blame the automaker?  If they get a flat with no spare, should we blame Firestone?  Who's fault is it?



    Really, in the end it's lack of planning on the folks driving the damn car.  Apple Maps has problems, but don't make it out to be that GoogleMaps is utopia.



    Mods... Please do something about this drive-by troll.

  • Reply 16 of 48
    sflocalsflocal Posts: 4,428member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post


     


    I really want to take this in a literal sense. Really want to do it.


     


    Gotta be at least five.





    Perhaps the idiot poster will whine that Maps took them to Peet's instead of Starbucks??? Oh, the horror!!!

  • Reply 17 of 48
    Both maps are new well how many years has google been out. Apple is still in its first calendar year. Both have good features yet now I believe in using Apple maps due to it well better than online google maps. Not to mention that apple maps has minimum problems. Just critics.
  • Reply 18 of 48


    Well that's one up for Apple Maps: I'd rather be misdirected to 'Murray Sunset National Park' than 'Wild Dog Road'.

  • Reply 19 of 48
    ufwaufwa Posts: 64member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by JeffDM View Post



    GPS units recommending inappropriate routes is an old story in general, I think people forget about them. I've heard of one where the GPS suggested driving up a staircase at a park. Another where someone drove off a dock because the directions didn't note the idiot user was supposed to wait for a ferry. I'm sure there are hundreds of other stories of varying inconvenience or danger, you're not supposed to trust the device uncritically, and you shouldn't depend on GPS over very out-of-the-way paths.

    Not only that, data can often be out of date. In my area, Navteq took a couple years to acknowledge a newly constructed road and bridge, and their data is used in several different GPS services, including Google.


     


    I think some people feel its fool proof and toss out all basic judgement.


     


    few months ago some lady drove onto train tracks as the GPS on her prius directed her to. She was able to get out of the car but wasn't able to get her mother out in time. 

  • Reply 20 of 48

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by malta View Post


    Yes, causing people to be stranded in the middle of nowhere 40 miles from your intended destination and making them walk miles to get rescued is EXCATLY the same as not indicating a one-way road.


     


    I don’t know how many times I have nearly died from dehydration because I went the wrong way on a street. Thank god for the rescue helicopter pilots, I don’t know what I would have done that time I went south on Madison Ave.  



     


    Frankly, this is an interesting exhibit showing the mentality of Google's fan base.


     


    Driving the wrong way on a one-way road is probably significantly more dangerous than being, "stranded in the middle of nowhere 40 miles from your intended destination". When that truck comes down the road in the other direction, death is much faster. At least if you are just in the middle of nowhere you have a chance of being rescued or even walking out on your own. I suppose you can argue that you don't have to suffer as long using Google Maps, and I guess that is a consideration, especially if you are using Android.

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