Apple loses its way with maps

 

Rory compares Apple's new map app with Google maps

Apple and Google used to be very close, with YouTube and Google Maps given pride of place on every iPhone, iPad and iPod. But since the launch of Android, which saw Google become a rival force in the mobile market, they have been increasingly at odds.

Now Apple's new mobile operating system iOS6 has arrived without a YouTube app and, far more controversially, a new mapping system.

Apple is proud of Maps, with its turn-by-turn navigation and its 3D flyover view allowing you to swoop over the landscape.

But early users seem far from convinced that this is an upgrade from Google Maps. Amongst their complaints, the lack of Streetview (now a popular Google feature), little detail of the road system in the UK, and poorer satellite images - including the fact that much of Scotland appears covered in cloud.

More seriously, some places seem to have moved or been lost altogether. Search for Luton, for instance, and you will find it has been relocated to the Devon coast. Manchester United Football Club appears to have relocated to Sale, where it is sharing grounds with a community football club.

I've been contacted by a few people who say the new maps aren't bad for a first try - and that it has taken Google years to perfect their product. But that does not sound like much of an excuse for a company that prides itself on not releasing any product until it is perfect.

 
Rory Cellan-Jones Article written by Rory Cellan-Jones Rory Cellan-Jones Technology correspondent

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