- Half the time when you ask for directions to a town or city, it’ll direct you to something else entirely. Comically, when I earlier tried getting directions to Truro, Maps assumed that I wanted to visit Richmond-based Truro Productions Ltd rather than a nice town in Cornwall. Doing that very American thing of stating a country after a town or city (e.g. ‘London, England’) always seems to work. However, if British people dare utter place names in that way, we’re legally obliged to punch ourselves repeatedly in the face until unconscious. (Excitingly, it also appears Maps’s idiocy is entirely random. Sometimes, it ‘just works’. Sometimes, it’s clearly had an appointment with a lobotomist.)
- Type in a post code to find out where a building lives and Maps helpfully prunes this part of the address to five characters. So, instead of, say, GU16 7UJ, Maps will amend the address to cut off the last two digits. Occasionally, it’ll also helpfully round up or down the fifth digit, just to further confuse matters. Any guesses which country that rhymes with Invited Plates of Numerica uses post codes that have five digits?
- Satellite photos of huge swathes of not-USA are akin to you being an idiot and walking right up to a wall in a mid-1990s PC FPS. It’s not so much “I can see my house from here” as “Why the hell has my town turned into a blurry mess of pixels?”
I don’t doubt mapping is hard, but Apple’s previous solution (i.e. using Google data) provided a robust and feature-rich experience for users. At best, Maps for iOS 6 is spotty and, apparently, just a tad US-focussed. For movie sales, that’s fair enough, but for maps it’s simply not good enough. Maps aren’t nice-to-have, but a crucial component of a modern mobile OS. This is worse than a MobileMe moment, and Cook needs to usher his team into a room, ask them what Maps was supposed to do, and then yell something along the lines of: “So why the fuck doesn’t it do that?”