Apple's new iPhoto for iOS uses OpenStreetMap data in place of Google

Posted:
in iPad edited January 2014


Signaling a move away from Google Maps, Apple's new iPhoto for iOS gets some of its mapping data from the OpenStreetMap Foundation.



The foundation revealed that Apple is using its data in a post to its official blog on Thursday. Previously, Apple used Google Maps for its Mac version of iPhoto, as well as the rest of its iOS applications.



"The OSM data that Apple is using is rather old (start of April 2010) so don't expect to see your latest and greatest updates on there," wrote Jonathan Bennett of OpenStreetMap. "It's also missing the necessary credit to OpenStreetMap's contributors; we look forward to working with Apple to get that on there."



But Bennett said the foundation is "delighted" to have Apple make the switch from Google Maps to OpenStreetMap. The blog post suggests that Apple did not speak with the foundation before releasing iPhoto on Wednesday, as Bennett said they were "pleased to find" Apple had switched to OpenStreetMap.



Once iPhoto for iOS was released, users immediately began to notice that the software uses a different style of map that isn't credited to anyone. That's a change from all of Apple's previous iOS devices, which have relied on mapping data from Google Maps.











Apple is still using some data from Google for maps in iPhoto, representatives from the company told John Gruber of Daring Fireball. But the use of OpenStreetMap for the map displays in iPhoto signals a major shift for Apple, as the company is expected to develop its own mapping solutions in the future.



In recent years, Apple had acquired a number of mapping companies, signaling that it intends to move away from its dependence on Google. And a year ago, the company publicly admitted it's building a "crowd-sourced traffic" service for iPhone users.



[ View article on AppleInsider ]

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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 48
    tallest skiltallest skil Posts: 43,399member
    Open Street Map needs to take their stuff to vector, for crying out loud.
  • Reply 2 of 48
    solipsismxsolipsismx Posts: 19,566member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post


    Open Street Map needs to take their stuff to vector, for crying out loud.



    Yeah, it's not good. I hope Apple isn't planning this for their Google Maps replacement.
  • Reply 3 of 48
    It's not like this will see widespread use, but I agree with others that the map data is poor at best. I tried it with a shot I took yesterday and was thoroughly disappointed in the results. On iPhoto on my mba, it still uses Google's mapping, which is leaps and bounds better. The only thing that bothered me was that the photo showed my location as where my wifi router was inside my condo, not outside where I was in the parking lot. I know this is a google issue, not Apple issue as google has clearly added my router into their location mapping.
  • Reply 4 of 48
    jowie74jowie74 Posts: 540member
    It looks like mapping from the 18th century.
  • Reply 5 of 48
    OpenStreetMap is vector data by its very nature. How it gets rendered is down to the software which makes use of the provided vector data, not the data itself. I'm guessing that the image shown above doesn't make use of the provided data very well at all.



    jmgregory - unless your mba has a gps attached chances are that Google will give your location as the location of the router to which you are currently connected - locating a computer as opposed to an iPhone/iPad is pretty much always going to be less accurate due to the limited methods of location available. Having a GPS makes it pretty damn accurate, triangulating cell towers is still pretty good - but if all you have is WiFi, then it's gonna pick your connected router every time.
  • Reply 6 of 48
    feynmanfeynman Posts: 1,087member
    I'm willing to bet Maps will be completely revamped in iOS 6, to be previewed at WWDC this summer and soon everyone will forget all about this lol
  • Reply 7 of 48
    tallest skiltallest skil Posts: 43,399member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Setanta View Post


    OpenStreetMap is vector data by its very nature.



    Yes, the streets are. The map very obviously isn't.
  • Reply 8 of 48
    Utterly useless maps. My address does not exist, my street is in the wrong place, 6 of 12 streets in the neighborhood are in the wrong place, there is land and a street shown where, in reality, there is water. This is in a fairly major urban area. The neighborhood was laid out in the 1930's.



    This won't last long.
  • Reply 9 of 48
    solipsismxsolipsismx Posts: 19,566member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Feynman View Post


    I'm willing to bet Maps will be completely revamped in iOS 6, to be previewed at WWDC this summer and soon everyone will forget all about this lol



    I sure hope so. I thought maybe Apple would demo a new Maps apps on the new iPad because it would look more impressive than on an iPhone, but they can still do that at WWDC for iOS 6.
  • Reply 10 of 48
    mstonemstone Posts: 11,510member
    OpenStreetMap is editable and utilizes various types of image formats including vector, illustrated maps as well as aerial photography obtained from license free often local sources. It is not one unified format like Google Maps.
  • Reply 11 of 48
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    "It's also missing the necessary credit to OpenStreetMap's contributors



    Apple being the bullies they are
  • Reply 12 of 48
    ric.mric.m Posts: 3member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Eye Forget View Post


    Utterly useless maps. My address does not exist, my street is in the wrong place, 6 of 12 streets in the neighborhood are in the wrong place, there is land and a street shown where, in reality, there is water. This is in a fairly major urban area. The neighborhood was laid out in the 1930's.



    This won't last long.



    You're absolutely right. It won't last long... Because the data set is open and when inaccuracies are identified, someone can step in and fix them. If you have a strong feeling about it, it could be you. Mapping tools are free and available on most platforms - simPle edits can even be done on your phone.
  • Reply 13 of 48
    hmurchisonhmurchison Posts: 12,215member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by realitycheck69 View Post


    Apple being the bullies they are



    Apple's not but "I' am. Time out for you!
  • Reply 14 of 48
    knightlieknightlie Posts: 282member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Eye Forget View Post


    Utterly useless maps. My address does not exist, my street is in the wrong place, 6 of 12 streets in the neighborhood are in the wrong place, there is land and a street shown where, in reality, there is water. This is in a fairly major urban area. The neighborhood was laid out in the 1930's.



    This won't last long.



    Instead of complaining about it why don't you register an account and fix it? That's the whole point of OpenStreetMap; I've spent many hours correcting the low-fidelity data in my region.





    It's very poor for Apple not to have credited OSM, and the crappy quality raster maps they have used don't show OSM in a very good light, as evidenced by the posts on here. I would assume this is a stop-gap measure until Apples own solution is ready.
  • Reply 15 of 48
    matrix07matrix07 Posts: 1,993member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by hmurchison View Post


    Apple's not but "I' am. Time out for you!



  • Reply 16 of 48
    slurpyslurpy Posts: 5,115member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by hmurchison View Post


    Apple's not but "I' am. Time out for you!



    Wow, finally. Every single one of his posts has been a troll, and his name kind of gives it away too.
  • Reply 17 of 48
    nasseraenasserae Posts: 3,153member
    I have a feeling that this is temporary until they have their own maps services up and running later this summer with iOS 6.
  • Reply 18 of 48
    timmydaxtimmydax Posts: 284member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post


    Yes, the streets are. The map very obviously isn't.



    They're Apple's map tiles generated from OSM files, at low rez (ironically) and not great.



    See here for more details (not affiliated):

    http://alastaira.wordpress.com/2012/...ving-bastards/



    They are lovely in their 19th Century charm though!
  • Reply 19 of 48
    sflocalsflocal Posts: 4,493member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by hmurchison View Post


    Apple's not but "I' am. Time out for you!



    Dang, that's a nice quick drop of the hammer. Please wield it more often!
  • Reply 20 of 48
    solipsismxsolipsismx Posts: 19,566member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by NasserAE View Post


    I have a feeling that this is temporary until they have their own maps services up and running later this summer with iOS 6.



    I had never thought about it before seeing OSM maps but visually map images are fugly. I hope (and assume) whatever Apple brings to the table will be more visually appealing.



    PS: I wonder if free turn-by-turn courtesy of Siri will accompany their maps.
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