Apple Maps gets Houston transit data ahead of Super Bowl LI

Posted:
in iPhone edited January 2017
In time for Super Bowl LI, Apple on Sunday expanded Apple Maps transit data to include regional and metropolitan pubic transportation services in the Houston, Texas, area.




With Metro buses and Metro Rail data now live, iPhone users planning to attend next week's big game, as well as locals looking to avoid associated high traffic areas and potential road closures, will have in-app Maps access to transportation options beyond auto navigation and walking.

Houston is already making ready for Super Bowl festivities in and around the NRG Stadium area, and preparations during the week leading up to game day on Feb. 5 are expected to cause traffic jams. Metro rail services are picking up the slack by adding more trains to deal with the crush of travelers that will descend upon the city next weekend. The special Metro accommodations run from Jan. 28 to Feb. 5.

The Maps expansion arrives more than a month after a significant update in December that delivered mass transit data covering a number of previously unsupported locales in the UK. Apple brought Salt Lake City's transit data into the fold at around the same time.

Introduced as part of a major Maps revamp in iOS 9, Transit offers routes, departure times and other relevant data for buses, trains, ferries and other forms of public transportation. In addition to local schedules, users can access top-down views of select underground subway and train stations, a feature unique to Apple's service.

With the addition of Houston, Apple Maps Transit now supports 29 metropolitan areas in the U.S., including Atlanta, Austin, Baltimore, Boston, Chicago, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Columbus, Dallas, Denver, Ft. Worth, Honolulu, Kansas City, Los Angeles, Miami, New York City, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Portland (Oregon), Sacramento, San Antonio, San Jose, San Francisco, Salt Lake City, Seattle, and Washington D.C.

An international rollout is slow going, but Apple managed to build in launch support for hundreds of cities in China. Most recently, Japanese users gained access to Transit with iOS 10 late last year
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 24
    It seems that Apple needs more employees in the Maps department, at least for a few years while the system is fully developed. Apple Car and AR technology will require work beyond what is being done today.
    elijahg
  • Reply 2 of 24
    irelandireland Posts: 17,547member
    When will the data centre in India open?
  • Reply 3 of 24
    macxpressmacxpress Posts: 4,761member
    Whats the Super Bowl?
  • Reply 4 of 24
    I lived in the States, particularly in Houston. Why the hell Apple focus on the US where the public transit is just ridiculous (let alone NYC) compared with any but any country in Europe for example??
  • Reply 5 of 24
    macxpressmacxpress Posts: 4,761member
    alexmac said:
    I lived in the States, particularly in Houston. Why the hell Apple focus on the US where the public transit is just ridiculous (let alone NYC) compared with any but any country in Europe for example??
    Probably because there's millions of people in our cities that need to get around? Its just as important here as it is elsewhere. 
    mike1damn_its_hot
  • Reply 6 of 24
    alexmac said:
    I lived in the States, particularly in Houston. Why the hell Apple focus on the US where the public transit is just ridiculous (let alone NYC) compared with any but any country in Europe for example??

    Well those of us that live in and around Houston have a very different view of things than you do!
  • Reply 7 of 24
    macxpressmacxpress Posts: 4,761member
    alexmac said:
    I lived in the States, particularly in Houston. Why the hell Apple focus on the US where the public transit is just ridiculous (let alone NYC) compared with any but any country in Europe for example??

    Well those of us that live in and around Houston have a very different view of things than you do!
    Or any major city in the US for that matter. 
  • Reply 8 of 24
    For some reason, it would appear that some feel that simply dumping existing transit data from one location could be integrated into a universal application is a no brainer.

    Virtually every transit system in every city in the world (with the exception of China for sure) has their own nuances and each have to integrated separately, coded and vetted. Hell, look at the healthcare system. They are all created by individual organizations, using different coding/operating systems or versions thereof. Some are very sophisticated, while others deemed as juvenile. And consider for the moment that virtually every second, realtime transit data is being modified. And for that, it just can't be assured that it is foolproof.

    As far as I know, there is not a single transit app that has displayed 100% accuracy 100% of the time for every city they are built for. Worse example of this is the current explosion of commuter train accidents here in the US. Bottom line, obviously they weren't on the schedule.

    It is interesting that so many here complain about Apple's inability to get the job done. Keep in mind, that in the US alone, ~40 million times each weekday, people board public transportation provide by more than 7 thousand organizations. Each transit software deemed by their respective developers as the best; or it would be if they had more money.

    Now, I would assume that more than halve, i.e., >20 million (<6 % of the population) use the services more than twice a day. Yet nearly everyone complains here blames Apple.

    Time to put it in perspective. Look at you own city. Do they not have a 'Transit App'? Is it perfect! If so, why not use it. If not, why slap Apple for taking their time for your local inefficiencies and not on your dime?

    IMO!
  • Reply 9 of 24
    alexmac said:
    I lived in the States, particularly in Houston. Why the hell Apple focus on the US where the public transit is just ridiculous (let alone NYC) compared with any but any country in Europe for example??
     Apple's largest market share is in the English speaking countries, Japan, and China, so Apple has focused on adding support for where they have the most customers.
  • Reply 10 of 24
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 20,037member
     creek0512 said:
    alexmac said:
    I lived in the States, particularly in Houston. Why the hell Apple focus on the US where the public transit is just ridiculous (let alone NYC) compared with any but any country in Europe for example??
     Apple's largest market share is in the English speaking countries, Japan, and China, so Apple has focused on adding support for where they have the most customers.
    I thought I remembered reading some time ago that Apple was working with some 3rd party provider to integrate transit directions in Apple Maps? Maybe I was mistaken. That's why I'm a bit surprised to see only 29 metros in the US have coverage in Apple Maps currently, assuming the AI article is accurate.  
  • Reply 11 of 24
    kudukudu Posts: 31member
    30 US cities - San Diego 
  • Reply 12 of 24
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 20,037member
    kudu said:
    30 US cities - San Diego 
    Still pretty limited if that's accurate. I wonder why? The schedules are out there because you find them in other map apps. 
  • Reply 13 of 24
    alexmac said:
    I lived in the States, particularly in Houston. Why the hell Apple focus on the US where the public transit is just ridiculous (let alone NYC) compared with any but any country in Europe for example??
    Aside from being ill-informed about the massive public transportation systems in the USA, you might want to read up on Apple Maps and then issue an update to your post.  Apple has more cities outside of the US with Transit coverage. Apple has focused on many of the worlds largest public transit systems, but has many more cities/regions covered outside of the USA Indeed, as just one example, they just added most of Great Britain; they are far from wide coverage of the USA. 
    edited January 2017
  • Reply 14 of 24
    A fair bit OT, but beginning last year and for a few more years, looks like the graphic artists will have a little easier time with the Roman numerals in the Super Bowl logo design. The 88th Super Bowl logo will be a challenge though...
  • Reply 15 of 24
    gatorguy said:
     creek0512 said:
    alexmac said:
    I lived in the States, particularly in Houston. Why the hell Apple focus on the US where the public transit is just ridiculous (let alone NYC) compared with any but any country in Europe for example??
     Apple's largest market share is in the English speaking countries, Japan, and China, so Apple has focused on adding support for where they have the most customers.
    I thought I remembered reading some time ago that Apple was working with some 3rd party provider to integrate transit directions in Apple Maps? Maybe I was mistaken. That's why I'm a bit surprised to see only 29 metros in the US have coverage in Apple Maps currently, assuming the AI article is accurate.  
    Here's a video from WWDC 2016 where they explain how Transit directions are added for each city.  The video says 21 cities plus China, but since then Apple's added about 20 more plus all of Japan and Great Britain.
  • Reply 16 of 24
    gatorguy said:
    kudu said:
    30 US cities - San Diego 
    Still pretty limited if that's accurate. I wonder why? The schedules are out there because you find them in other map apps. 
    Sigh.  I wish every time Appleinsider updates Apple Maps Transit they would do two things,  first don't use the term "cities."  It is "regions" with over a thousand cities and hundreds of millions population with coverage.  In some cases it is now countries, for example most of Great Britain is now covered, ditto much of Japan.  

    Second, please include the following link each time.  In it you'll learn that Apple has taken a very different approach than Google. Google has been criticized and has all sorts of issues with its transit directions because they just linked to the schedules without during the hard work Apple is.  Yes, Apple could simply turn on all those cities/regions at once, but they want users to have a very different experience than with Google.  This is a great article that explains the Apple way.


    http://appleinsider.com/articles/16/07/07/why-apples-transit-maps-are-rolling-out-so-slowly


    edited January 2017
  • Reply 17 of 24
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 20,037member
    Notsofast said:
    gatorguy said:
    kudu said:
    30 US cities - San Diego 
    Still pretty limited if that's accurate. I wonder why? The schedules are out there because you find them in other map apps. 
    Sigh.  I wish every time Appleinsider updates Apple Maps Transit they would do two things,  first don't use the term "cities."  It is "regions" with over a thousand cities and hundreds of millions population with coverage.  In some cases it is now countries, for example most of Great Britain is now covered, ditto much of Japan.  

    Second, please include the following link each time.  In it you'll learn that Apple has taken a very different approach than Google. Google has been criticized and has all sorts of issues with its transit directions because they just linked to the schedules without during the hard work Apple is.  Yes, Apple could simply turn on all those cities/regions at once, but they want users to have a very different experience than with Google.  This is a great article that explains the Apple way.


    http://appleinsider.com/articles/16/07/07/why-apples-transit-maps-are-rolling-out-so-slowly


    A very helpful post. Thanks. That might help understand the source of the transit directions when looking at the city transit coverage in Google Maps. If it doesn't specifically say "Google" then it's sourcing whatever 3rd party transit source is listed.
    https://maps.google.com/landing/transit/cities/index.html

    Then again perhaps the transit schedule from that transportation provider is better than not having one at all. I'd assume that would be the same schedule as found in a specific app available from the public transportation provider. 
  • Reply 18 of 24
    gatorguy said:
    Notsofast said:
    gatorguy said:
    kudu said:
    30 US cities - San Diego 
    Still pretty limited if that's accurate. I wonder why? The schedules are out there because you find them in other map apps. 
    Sigh.  I wish every time Appleinsider updates Apple Maps Transit they would do two things,  first don't use the term "cities."  It is "regions" with over a thousand cities and hundreds of millions population with coverage.  In some cases it is now countries, for example most of Great Britain is now covered, ditto much of Japan.  

    Second, please include the following link each time.  In it you'll learn that Apple has taken a very different approach than Google. Google has been criticized and has all sorts of issues with its transit directions because they just linked to the schedules without during the hard work Apple is.  Yes, Apple could simply turn on all those cities/regions at once, but they want users to have a very different experience than with Google.  This is a great article that explains the Apple way.


    http://appleinsider.com/articles/16/07/07/why-apples-transit-maps-are-rolling-out-so-slowly


    A very helpful post. Thanks. That might help understand the source of the transit directions when looking at the city transit coverage in Google Maps. If it doesn't specifically say "Google" then it's sourcing whatever 3rd party transit source is listed.
    https://maps.google.com/landing/transit/cities/index.html

    Then again perhaps the transit schedule from that transportation provider is better than not having one at all. I'd assume that would be the same schedule as found in a specific app available from the public transportation provider. 
    Remember, this is Apple and love them or not, since Steve Jobs they have a different corporate ethos. It aggravates me at times, but Apple is all about not doing something simply because they can.  They generally will wait until it will be an improved experience; thus simply updating to the latest processor often is not a sufficient reason to upgrade as they will wait for a measurable change. In the case of maps, they decided that based on complaints to Google that having inaccurate or unreliable transit wasn't the type of experience they wanted to offer.  Especially after the debacle of a roll out, you can see them wanting to avoid what happened to Google.
  • Reply 19 of 24
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 20,037member
    Notsofast said:
    gatorguy said:
    Notsofast said:
    gatorguy said:
    kudu said:
    30 US cities - San Diego 
    Still pretty limited if that's accurate. I wonder why? The schedules are out there because you find them in other map apps. 
    Sigh.  I wish every time Appleinsider updates Apple Maps Transit they would do two things,  first don't use the term "cities."  It is "regions" with over a thousand cities and hundreds of millions population with coverage.  In some cases it is now countries, for example most of Great Britain is now covered, ditto much of Japan.  

    Second, please include the following link each time.  In it you'll learn that Apple has taken a very different approach than Google. Google has been criticized and has all sorts of issues with its transit directions because they just linked to the schedules without during the hard work Apple is.  Yes, Apple could simply turn on all those cities/regions at once, but they want users to have a very different experience than with Google.  This is a great article that explains the Apple way.


    http://appleinsider.com/articles/16/07/07/why-apples-transit-maps-are-rolling-out-so-slowly


    A very helpful post. Thanks. That might help understand the source of the transit directions when looking at the city transit coverage in Google Maps. If it doesn't specifically say "Google" then it's sourcing whatever 3rd party transit source is listed.
    https://maps.google.com/landing/transit/cities/index.html

    Then again perhaps the transit schedule from that transportation provider is better than not having one at all. I'd assume that would be the same schedule as found in a specific app available from the public transportation provider. 
    Remember, this is Apple and love them or not, since Steve Jobs they have a different corporate ethos. It aggravates me at times, but Apple is all about not doing something simply because they can.  They generally will wait until it will be an improved experience; thus simply updating to the latest processor often is not a sufficient reason to upgrade as they will wait for a measurable change. In the case of maps, they decided that based on complaints to Google that having inaccurate or unreliable transit wasn't the type of experience they wanted to offer.  Especially after the debacle of a roll out, you can see them wanting to avoid what happened to Google.
    What happened to Google? FWIW when Google sources from the various transit agencies I believe it's those agencies themselves uploading the schedules and relevant mapping using tools provided to them by Google. I would imagine Apple does something similar at least for the grunt work. 
    http://onlinepubs.trb.org/Onlinepubs/IDEA/FinalReports/Transit/Transit58_Final_Report.pdf
    edited January 2017
  • Reply 20 of 24
    Slow. Slow. Slow. Google maps have had international transit directions for years across practically any city. And it works very well also!!! Apple needs a lot more people in their maps department. 
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