Report: iOS 6 Maps local search flawed | iLounge News

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Report: iOS 6 Maps local search flawed

One user’s experiences with Apple’s new iOS 6 Maps app have led him to claim that local search is “broken.” After installing the seemingly final Gold Master of iOS 6, Josh Carr discovered point of interest database limitations attributed to Apple’s use of Yelp for business searches.

Now that Google is no longer associated with Apple’s Maps application, Carr reports users can search for businesses in one of three ways: business name, address, and Yelp category. Numerous searches revealed major issues, Carr claims, including a search for “iPhone repair” that only returned two results; both were companies that “illegally use the trademarked term ‘iPhone’ in the name of their company on their Yelp record,” even if the term wasn’t actually in their business names. Additionally, Yelp’s database isn’t as large as Google’s, and searches must now be more exact in their wording to yield proper results. Despite the addition of major new features such as turn-by-turn driving directions, Siri integration, and some 3-D mapping capabilities, Carr concludes that iOS 6 Maps is “a tremendous step backwards,” particularly for local point of interest searching. [via TUAW]

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Comments

1

Unfortunately, the original article is inaccurate.

According to Apple, Maps already had 100 million business listings at WWDC on 11 July 2012 versus 80 million business listings for Google Maps as reported by Bloomberg in an article from 12 July 2012 titled Apple Maps Already Has More Business Listings Than Google.

Additionally, the legal disclaimers for Apple Maps indicates that business listings are sourced from Acxiom, Factual and Localeze while business reviews are sourced from Yelp!.

Furthermore, the author of the original article seems confused or mistaken regarding search capabilities of Apple Maps.  Business listings input into Yelp! should ensure that businesses are listed in any and all applicable categories.  The onus of proper business marketing is on the owner of the business not a search provider. 

Google Maps likewise does not demonstrate results for businesses which have not specifically been added to the Google Maps database.  Apple demonstrates significant effort in sourcing business data from four different sources.

Posted by Patrick on September 17, 2012 at 4:46 PM (CDT)

2

@1: “Apple demonstrates significant effort in sourcing business data from four different sources.” - what does that even mean in this context?

Either Apple’s in-house Maps app works as well as their previously licensed Google based solution or it doesn’t. Nitpicking about whether they’ve got enough feature bullet points to claim equality with Google is like AT&T advertising how AT&T has “coverage” for over 93% of the U.S. in response to Verizon pointing out how much greater their 4G coverage was. Apple reportedly having 100 million business listings vs 80 million probably doesn’t matter much when most people are going to be going to major businesses that are in both databases. Day to day usability for the end customer is what will decide if Apple’s Maps lives up to the former program, not your nitpicking about things in the legal disclaimer and whether or not the article author correctly attributed the underlying cause to the poor results he was getting.

We’ll all need to wait until iOS 6 devices are in more hands to make an informed opinion, but base on the quality of most of Apple’s in-house apps, I won’t be holding my breath that it’s going to do anything but provide discussion fodder.

Posted by Code Monkey in Midstate New York on September 17, 2012 at 5:37 PM (CDT)

3

I ambivalent to this story however i find it very interested that you say Patrick is “nit-picking” Code Monkey. His statement seems reasonable to me and adds far more worthy commentary than bemoaning the grammatical correctness of ilounge stating the new earpods are only coming with “some” ipods…

Posted by Big Bad Burley on September 17, 2012 at 7:51 PM (CDT)

4

It’s definitely flawed.  I was looking for a Mexican restaurant a few miles away in Atlanta & the app told me to drive to Algeria.  Yes, that Algeria.

Posted by Adam on September 18, 2012 at 8:47 PM (CDT)

5

Yeah, This could be a larger mistake for apple then they realize. We don’t realize how much we use the phone’s map until it is gone. And believe me, unless you know the explicit verbatim address and zip code you will get no results and if you do many of them are completely wrong. I put in att in Orlando for instance, it misses the main att store and sends you out in the woods down a vacant road. I have also had other countries appear for no reason when looking for businesses. This is crazy. I hope this corrected soon or people will be running from apple. A smart with with a useless unreliable map is pointless. This is more than nit picking. It is serious problem.

Posted by Concerned on September 19, 2012 at 4:18 PM (CDT)

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