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Maps

Posted on Wednesday, December 12th, 2012

Dave!And so... today I got pulled over for expired license tabs. Which means that I never got my renewal notice, because I always pay my annual licensing fees immediately after I receive that little card in the mail. Fortunately, the police officer wasn't a dick about it, and just asked me to get it taken care of. Which I did, straight away. And now I've told my iPhone to remind me every year so I don't have to rely on state government efficiency.

In other driving-related news... Google Maps is now available as an app for iOS...

Google Maps Logo

Apple dropped Google for their mapping service because Google wasn't updating the iOS maps as quickly as their own Android mapping service. Android got turn-by-turn directions... the iPhone did not. And so on. This put Apple at a competitive disadvantage, so they really had no choice but to drop Google and create something of their own that would feature-map what the competition was getting.

And we all know how that turned out.

Except...

Now that I've actually been using Apple Maps... I prefer some aspects of their app more than I do Google (even on my Android phone). Especially when it comes to caching map data, turn-by-turn directions, and the look and feel. But there was one area where Apple falls flat. And continues to do so. Location data. Google's database for mapping locations is insanely massive. Apple's is pretty much shit. And, as if that wasn't bad enough, it's also stupid. Google can make pretty good guesses, even when you misspell something. Apple has a hard time finding shit even if you spell it out completely and accurately.

This is something that Apple will get better at with time.

And they do have to keep getting better (=cough= public transit maps =cough=).

Because that's what's going to keep Google from shitting all over iPhone users by refusing to give them the same features of their own Android OS maps. Odds are, if Apple hadn't dumped Google, we would still be without turn-by-turn directions.

But now iOS users have turn-by-turn on both Apple maps and Google maps. They can choose what works best for them.

For me, it will probably be a combination of both.

Whichever one will get me to the Department of Licensing on time.

Tags: , , ,
Categories: Apple Stuff 2012, iPhone + iPadClick To It: Permalink
   

Comments

  1. claire says:

    DMV/RMV, ARGH! My state decided to stop sending license renewal notices a couple years ago. Every year around my birthday, I’m always pulling it out to double-check the expiration date.

    AAA has a thing for sending notifications I think. Might have one for registrations too…

  2. the muskrat says:

    i downloaded this yesterday after hearing it had come out, but i still like waze pretty well for directions and traffic info.

  3. James Bow says:

    Tried Google Maps earlier today and compared it with Apple Maps.

    Interestingly, there’s been a major road extension opened up in my region just six days ago. Google Maps had that extension on its maps. Apple didn’t.

    However, Google Maps’ driving directions algorithm hadn’t yet recognized the new road and continued to detour around it. So, I’d call that a wash, maybe.

  4. Since there is no Apple Maps for the desktop, I’ll keep using Google Maps on the desktop and it says Google copies items you’ve saved on the web to the phone so that might be useful.

    Overall, I’m loving the Apple Maps on my iOS devices and it integrates with my address book and addresses that appear in e-mail messages (which Google Maps does not). This is what makes it super useful to me.

    Google Maps does have some better coverage for other countries (specifically for me, Costa Rica) so that’ll matter to some people.

    I like the streetview in Google Maps too :)

    I’m sure some older iOS device users will love Google’s Map App since I think it supports turn-by-turn instructions on some of the older models.

    I’m hoping Google just keeps making it better and in turn forces Apple to make their app better. I’m guessing address book integration and iPad support will be high on the feature list…

    I need both of them to make the font size bigger. If I can’t read it while driving, that’s kind of a driving hazard…

  5. After playing around with the new maps in iOS 6 I promptly moved it to my “shitty shit” folder on my last screen (c’mon Apple you know no-one uses the compass or the stocks app, let us delete them already).

    After that I navigated to maps.google.com in Safari and did the ‘save to homescreen’ thingy. So at least I had a decent mapping app until one of two things happened, Apple fixed their maps, Google produced a new native app.

    And Google got their first. And I’ve got to say that the new native app is really really nice. But, good lord, Google sure wants you to sign in don’t they?

  6. martymankins says:

    The beauty is being able to have multiple Maps apps on your phone. Google gets my vote for longevity and polished. Apple Maps is working it’s way to being a decent maps app.

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