Apple Maps: Decision by Wall Street?

by Patrick Moorhead   |   October 2nd, 2012
Just as we all start to get sick of reading and debating the Apple Maps debacle,  a new interesting thread, issue, or new piece of information comes up.  This time, it was, Apple’s CEO Tim Cook apologizing for the lousy experience Apple Maps delivers.  You should put to rest the debate on whether it’s a good experience or not as it is per Apple’s own admission.  I applaud Apple for its admission, but Apple should never shipped it.  From a company who has defined itself by delivering the best experiences, why was there a decision made to ship a sub optimal experience?
 
Apple redefined for the entire technology industry what the word "experience" means. While There may be some debate debate if Apple has redefined the personal computer, There’s no one who can legitimately argue that Apple did not do this for the smart phone and even the tablet.
 
This is why it is just so odd as to why Apple would allow this low-quality map application to be released in the first place.
 
There are really only two different and mutually exclusive ways this can be explained:
1) Apple forgot how to deliver and evaluate a good experience.  Essentially this scenario says that Apple, after delivering great mobile experiences for years, forgot how to do that and how to measure it.
-OR-
2) Apple knew they were delivering a poor experience and decided to ship the iPhone 5 and iOS 6 anyways.  they would deal with the consequences afterwards.
 
Any reasonable person who follows technology closely must know that it’s the second option.
 
This then gets to the decision making process.  Anyone who has ever spent any time in product management knows that near the launch of a product, you have many launch readiness reviews. Apple may call their review something different, but they have something like it.   It involves cross functional teams, typically including product management, product marketing, program management, engineering, manufacturing and operations. Each group goes through their review, one after the other. These types of meetings essentially compare the minimum launch criteria with the current state of the product. The outcome of this meeting determines if the product is ready to ship or not and the critical actions to close the gap. The most senior executives rarely attend these meetings, but are sought afterwards for escalation If there are issues.
 
You can bet that Apple maps was reviewed and scrutinized over and over and over. You can assume some people said that the experience was good enough to ship and there were those who said Apple maps was not ready to be shipped.  The decision probably came down to Tim Cook himself, who opted to ship a sub-optimal Apple maps experience.
 
Tim Cook had a very difficult decision to make in that none of them resulted in anything optimal. He had to choose between:
1) Ship a sub optimal experience coincident with the launch of the iPhone 5, "hitting" commit dates made to Wall Street, press and retailers. With this decision Apple would potentially take the heat from consumers and the press.
2) Delay shipping the iPhone 5  until Apple Maps delivered a good experience. This would raise the ire of Wall Street and investors.  As we have seen over the last two weeks, Even though Apple shipped millions of the new iPhone five, it still wasn’t good enough for much of Wall Street. Imagine, if the iPhone five were delayed by a few months.  Imagine what that would’ve done to the stock price.
 
So how did it work out for Apple? Short-term, it worked out pretty well if you measure in terms of sales. They sold 5 million iPhone 5s the first weekend and 100M ungraded to iOS 6.  Apple’s stock hit a massive hit this week, but it’s unclear to say if Apple Maps were the culprit, if it was financial analyst expectation versus how many they sold, or fears of production issues.  It was a combination of all of these.   Apple’s reputation has surely taken a hit but it’s unknown if it will have any lasting impact. Apple’s prior issues with products stemming from things like iPhone antennas, MobileMe, and Ping barely made a brand scratch and was followed up by record selling products.  I do believe that people will start to question brand-new things that Apple gets into that are related to their core competencies.  These are could be markets like search and products like TVs.
 
So why was the decision made to ship a lousy Apple Maps experience? As we’ve seen Apple’s stock get hammered as of late, it was about the stock price.  Imagine if Apple had delayed shipping the Phone 5.  The stock would have been hammered even harder.  Therefore, Apple’s Tim Cook probably made the right short-term business and stock decision even if it wasn’t in the best interests of its customers.  You see, brands have half-lives, and while Apple cannot have a string of incidents like Apple Maps, it can afford this one in isolation.  Tim Cook, Wall Street thanks you.  Apple Maps users, not so much.

Patrick Moorhead

Patrick Moorhead was ranked the #1 technology industry analyst by Apollo Research for the U.S. and EMEA in May, 2013.. He is President and Principal Analyst of Moor Insights & Strategy, a high tech analyst firm focused on the ecosystem intersections of the phone, tablet, PC, TV, datacenter and cloud. Moorhead departed AMD in 2011 where he served as Corporate Vice President and Corporate Fellow in the strategy group. There, he developed long-term strategies for mobile computing devices and personal computers. In his 11 years at AMD he also led product management, business planning, product marketing, regional marketing, channel marketing, and corporate marketing. Moorhead worked at Compaq Computer Corp. during their run to the #1 market share leader position in personal computers. Moorhead also served as an executive at AltaVista E-commerce during their peak and pioneered cost per click e-commerce models.
  • FalKirk

    “From a company who has defined itself by delivering the best experiences, why was there a decision made to ship a sub optimal experience?”

    I know that for many the new maps solution is a sub-optimal experience but for me it is the far superior option.

    The old Google maps were great, but I never used them because they did not provide audible turn-by-turn directions. And they were never going to. I relied upon alternative solutions like Motion X GPS Drive, GPS by Telenav, TomTom U.S.A. and Navigon. The new Apple map app:

    1) Integrates seamlessly with iOS 6;
    2) Can be activated using Siri;
    3) Provides turn-by-turn directions; and
    4) Provides a tremendous user experience.

    Is the new map solution sub-optimal for many? Absolutely. Especially for those who rely upon transit directions or whose locales or points of interest are missing. But for me and, I suspect, many others like me, the new Apple maps – which I now use several times every day – are already the far, far superior option.

    • http://techpinions.com/about-tech-pinions/patrick-moorhead Patrick Moorhead

      John, Apple is the most powerful company in the world with all the resources in the world who broker their promise with the consumer. There’s no excuse. The “Google wasn’t better” argument doesn’t hold water either else Apple wouldn’t have issued an apology. The first time you get lost or a landmark doesn’t exist, you may think differently.

    • http://www.nathanhornby.com/ Nathan Hornby

      Have to say that I’m in the same boat.

      Like you, I won’t deny that others are suffering, I’ve seen the evidence. But for me it’s amazing. All the features of Google Maps, plus turn-by-turn on top.

      I think your location makes a huge difference as to how good or bad the experience is – but it’s worth noting that this isn’t a ‘user experience’ failing – the product is simply unfinished and unreliable in some areas. Although this affects the experience as a whole, it’s not a UX failing, it’s a data failing.

    • Steve Hume

      As a user in Canada, where IOS 5 did not give Siri directions, IOS 6 Maps is a great improvement. I am impressed with its rapid recalculation. I have found and reported one wrong turn recommendation so far. It is easier to use than Navigon by far and I am willing to tolerate the era of refinement in the mapping data.

      I found cases where the Apple Maps data is even better than Google but so what. I was surprised that the Maps satellite image of our cottage area was superior to Google.

      As an Apple stockholder and user I approve of the decision to ship Maps as-is. The usability of the Maps app is better than my dedicated Garmin or the Garmin owned Navigon app. It was gracious of Tim Cook to give alternate Nav apps a last promotion as Apple obsoletes them with their skill in usability.

      • http://www.tumblr.com/blog/his-divine-shadow His Shadow

        I asked Siri a series of questions for that exact reason, because it now has the Maps integration it was missing. It has become an even more valuable tool.

  • http://www.nathanhornby.com/ Nathan Hornby

    “While There may be some debate debate if Apple has redefined the personal computer”

    Well they didn’t redefine it, they defined it. With the Apple Lisa.

  • gkinchina

    Millions of vulnerable people (the old, the infirm or with low tech literacy) who upgrades from IOS5 to IOS6, are unaware of all this. Using the new maps as they would the old, they risk injury and in some cases, death. Apple should immediately include a prominent warning notification on its ios6 maps app. Apple has made things worse by disallowing a revert to IOS5 – millions want to downgrade/revert to the old OS but cannot.

    • Rich

      Cook suggested that Apple’s customers could “try alternatives by downloading map apps from the App Store like Bing, MapQuest and Waze, or use Google or Nokia maps by going to their websites and creating an icon on your home screen to their web app.” But it wouldn’t suit your purpose to mention that, would it, gkinchina? You’d rather talk about risking death.

      • gkinchina

        Let me rewrite it so that you understand -

        Of the 100 million people who upgraded from IOS5 to IOS6, between 10 and
        40 million people are challenged – with advanced age, declining or low
        cognition, technology illiteracy….

        Most of these people do
        not know anything about the dysfunctional IOS6 Maps and have not heard
        of Tim Cooks Apology. They are unlikely to read or understand the
        alternative solutions suggested by Tim Cook. They do not know that the
        data is mostly wrong for locations outside the USA.

        They will
        do what they have done before, use an easy to use, very well designed
        Map application (this is true for both IOS5 Maps and IOS6 Maps). They do
        not know that unlike earlier, the new Maps may point them to the wrong
        place or in the wrong direction.

        They risk injury and death.

        Apple IOS6 Maps must – on every screen or through repeated
        notifications, warn of the problem. Not doing so would be irresponsible.

        They must also provide a simple way for people to downgrade or revert
        to IOS5 Maps or IOS5 – both of which have been blocked by Apple.

        • steve_wildstrom

          What is the source of your cvlaim that between 10 and 40% of the early adopters of iOS are so impaired. Seems unlikely.

          Second, no one should ever trust any nav or map system blindly. I have never used one that didn’t try to lead me astray at some point. It’s true that Apple Maps wants me to get to Dulles Airport by abandoning my car, climbing the airport fence, and running across and active runway. If I were to do this, I don’t think Apple would be liable if I were shot by airport security or hit by a plane because of my own contributory negligence. I also wonder about your assertion that Apple maps are terrible everywhere outside the U.S. What we seem to be getting is more of a patchwork of good and less good places.

          The last thing we need are more warnings to add to the overwhelming and largely ignored warnings noise that already assaults us. What we do need is people exercising some common sense.

          • gkinchina

            It is simple common sense -

            1. Aged – above age 65
            2. Technology challenged or technology illiterate – about 30 percent of all smartphone users
            3. Infirm – anywhere between 2 to 4 percent of the general population and upto 6 percent of smartphone users are so impaired.

            100M IOS6 upgrades is a published number. Look it up.

            Maps is no longer a nice to have app. Mainstream map apps have matured to a degree where digital map users have stopped carrying paper maps. This definitely includes many of the “challenged ” category above. Please also note that paper maps generally are very accurate.

            I can give you hundreds of types of examples – I think you can extrapolate yourself from the one I give you here -

            Old person and her companion living alone. He shows signs of a heart attack. Her phone is working and ambulance is using faulty maps OR She drives him to the hospital and she has faulty maps. Either case, delay can result in death.

            This warning is critically important. How do you value a human life? Old and infirm though it may be?

            Please also be under ng illusions about Apple IOS6 maps accuracy outside USA. I have been in 3 Asian countries this week and routing works only 20 percent of the time. Search fails 90 percent of the time for me and is erroneous about 20 percent of the time. This compares with over 95 percent success in the IOS5 Maps.

          • steve_wildstrom

            You common sense is statistical nonsense. You cannot add percentages like that without eliminating the double-counting of overlap. Not all of us over 65 are cognitively challenged. And you cannot assume that iOS 6 upgraders are representative of the general population–we are richer, younger, and more knowledgeable about tech, among other things.

            By the way, the maps Apple is using are generally fine. TomTom (Tele Atlas) has been at this longer than Google. Problems are with search and, sometimes, routing. But frankly, the routing errors I have seen are so obvious that no one would actually follow them.

          • gkinchina

            You are wrong on all three counts because -

            1. I provided a range of 10 to 40 to eliminate double counting. It takes a great leap of faith to peg the number at less than 10 percent.
            2. You significantly overestimate the wealth or intellect of IOS6 users. You also overestimate the tech savvy , Multi-lingual capabilities and under estimate the age distribution of IOS6 users as well. I know enough about statistics and use it in professional market research to know my numbers and demographics well. Please also stop thinking USA – my post is focused only out of the USA.
            3. Tom Tom is not very active in Asia and their data here is very poor. I challenge you to an online demo from here in Asia – I can prove it and so can many others. What you say about this also indicates poor knowledge about the Maps situation outside USA.

            Anyway – over and out. I can’t read any more email tonight.

          • FalKirk

            “It is simple common sense.” – gkinchina

            Your calculations are simple. But they are the furthest thing from common sense.

          • gkinchina

            Maybe, maybe not. I don’t hold a candle for Apple, Google, Microsoft or any of these big companies.

            My interest (it should be everyone’s in my opinion) is to ensure that with increased reliance and dependence of the general non-tech population on tech gadgets, these companies do not cross the line into irresponsible, illegal or unethical behaviour.

          • mhikl

            The sky is falling, the sky is falling. We know it’s true, @gkinchina:disqus told us so.

          • AdamChew

            Your logic is simply shallow, how many ambulance drivers are there who don’t know their way to the hospital.

            Input the address of the hospital and it will showed on the Apple Maps I can’t believe anyone will be that stupid as to go to a hospital in another town or city.

            Lame dude.

          • steve_wildstrom

            There have been cases reported of emergency crews going to the wrong locations for calls because they were misled by navigation systems. But this has been going on for as long as there have been map- and GPS-based nav systems. There’s some evidence that relying on nav systems is eroding peoples’ ability to navigate on their own, but this is a problem that has nothing to do with Apple maps.

          • mhikl

            Even the senile will figure out pretty fast that when something doesn’t work, stop using it. @gkinchina:disqus, ye have an axe to grind; a disabling brain function from which the practitioner obviously fails to glean a clue.

          • gkinchina

            If you bought a car with a satnav system and it was upgraded to one that did not work well by the car company, what would you expect as a consumer? Especially after the car manufacturer announces a problem with it and apologises?

            I am not sure, but I suspect you will ask for a replacement satnav system or you will ask for the old satnav system back as a temporary fix.

            The car company will also usually be required by law to do a product recall and will be legally liable for any accidents caused as a result of this problem.

            It will also be no surprise that most of the victims of any such accidents will not be the best of drivers.

            However, like I said earlier, you are entitled to your opinion, as I am to mine.

          • mhikl

            Gichibud, if you bought a new cerebrum from your shrink and it was upgraded to one that could think would you exchange it and go back to doing somersaults under sugar plum trunks or use it to pawn-off foundling skunks to cat lovers in distress. What a mess.

            Me thinks someone has toooo much time on his hands.

            Patrick, this good article has taken a bad turn into the realm of Alice-in-Wonderland.

            Back to the real world. Google maps were horrid in the beginning but from the horrors and miscalcs a lot of good data was obtained to make Google map service as good as it is. All the loonies that lost their direction assisted in the gathering. The one’s that made mad turns in the middle of poppy fields chasing imaginary friends down rabbit holes were paid tribute at special services by loved ones. The medical field is the fault here—imagine, allowing licence to the feeble to drive. “My goodness gracious”, as my granny would say.

            Apple is on the same road well travelled by. So the finger come out to point? My three year old say, “No good”.

          • steve_wildstrom

            Folks, lets try to keep the discussion focused on the issues and avoid the personal insults. I was going to close the comments on this post, but since some on-topic stuff is still sneaking through, I won’t. But please try to keep it civil.

          • gkinchina

            Sorry buddy. Road well travelled does not hold – when Google and its ilk were travelling that road, people trusted their paper maps and carried them. Not any more.

          • mhikl

            You had me up to “Not any more.” Gitchibud.
            Maps can still be got in paper. I still have a great compass from by scouting days and binoculars, some candles, a tin of dry matches, flares, a jar of peanut butter sealed with wax and snowshoes should the north winds wail across my path. What’s to stop anyone, feeble or fleet of foot from doing the same or dropping in to a gas station for directions. And of course, that iPhone does have a phone.
            Dangdest thing. I should have thought of that first and come a lot sooner to this merry discussion and this whole thread could have been stopped before it got started. Think of the gas that could have been saved.

          • gkinchina

            I did think of buying an iPhone 4s or iPad next month for my aunt who is getting along in years and lives with an equally aged companion. They are in India, where unlike the USA, IOS6 maps has very poor data.

            Once I give it them, I’ll also have to tell them – if you want directions, do not use ‘this’ app but use ‘that’ one. And if you click on an address link in your email or calendar or address book, it will open ‘this’ map. Don’t use it – copy and paste the address into ‘that’ app instead. Remember what I told you – else you may find yourself at the wrong place or you may get into trouble!

            I just wish Apple would do this for me by simply including a warning into the IOS6 app.

            I also wish Apple would give me the ability to downgrade from IOS6 to IOS5 – I can then gift them MY iPad and not worry about educating them. All that I need to tell them is – it will tell you to upgrade and that an update is available. Do not do it!

            In my opinion Apple must do both things anyway and it is probably illegal to block the ability to return to IOS5. But then, you disagree – so lets not debate the point.

        • AdamChew

          How you account for the handicapped injuring themselves using the Apple Maps.

          How do the Maps point them to the wrong place – you mean it will point them to San Francisco instead of Houston.

          You mean people are that mentally challenged that they can’t tell the difference and blindly follow the Maps like some very clever bloggers over the cliff or melted bridge.

        • Rich

          If you are determined to be as negative as possible you’re free to do that.

        • TheEternalEmperor

          Injury and death, eh? Apple is a monster. As is the car makers who’s rolling death machines fail to stop before slamming in to pedestrians.

          Oy.

        • http://www.tumblr.com/blog/his-divine-shadow His Shadow

          They risk injury and death.

          Spare us your maudlin soliloquy.

          • gkinchina

            You are as entitled to your opinion as I am to mine. I have already said what I have to say. If there is no merit in it, good for everyone. If it turns out otherwise, I will get no pleasure in saying “I told you so”.
            It is for Apple to figure out what they want to do (if anything) or to wait and hope that nothing happens anywhere.

            My personal (and many others I know) issue with Apple is different – it is simply a demand to let me downgrade to IOS5 and remove the block. Just give me back what I paid for and take back this IOS6 Maps from my phone. None of the alternative app suggestions work for me as well as iOS 5 Maps did.

    • icuttothechase

      I live outside the USA and I am very happy with Maps. I returned to my home in Norwich from Bath after a journey others say takes 5 to 5 and a half hours. Maps took me straight to my door in 4 and a half hours. I am both old and infirm and resent your patronizing BS. I have no idea where you source your comment about “outside the USA, the maps are very inaccurate”. With more detailed research I think you will find that if anything the opposite is true, the Chinese maps for example have received high praise. As far as “end up sending people to the wrong location or in the wrong direction” I can assure you that when I needed to re route because of raoadworks or accidents Maps was very fast at adapting directions. I have no further use for Google maps.

      • gkinchina

        No doubt, it works equally well for most people and that is why Apple apologised for the Maps product.

        Good that it works well for you.

        For a great many, it does not and vulnerable people must be warned. It is simply the right thing to do.

        Actually, God forbid, something happens somewhere, It may be deemed illegal for Apple to not haw done so.

        • AdamChew

          Lame dude,

          No one is stupid but then I believe some are after reading your comments and some very clever bloggers’ blogs.

          No wonder the world is in such a mess.

          • gkinchina

            Digital maps have matured to a point where people who have it do not carry paper maps anymore.

            Paper maps have been accurate always.

            If you believe that all 100 million people are of able body, able mind and not in need of any special assistance, it may be a mistaken notion.

            Maps is not email or calendar or the news. It is used by people on the move (when exposed to the elements and others where mistakes could cause accidents) and also used during emergencies where delays could be fatal.
            You may be right. In which case all is good. If I turn out to be right, it is a horrible thing to contemplate. How do you value a human life?

      • gkinchina

        I am glad it works well for you.

        For many it does not. If it was good for most, there would have been no need for Apple to apologise and suggest competing alternatives. The company has already acknowledged a problem.

        People using digital maps have stopped using paper maps. Vulnerable people are at risk if they suddenly start using a faulty map without knowing about it. Apple must warn them through prominent notifications on the new Map App.

        God forbid, if one or more accidents actually happen because of this, it will be not merely irresponsible of Apple but illegal and expensive as well.

  • Rich

    Patrick, I think you’re overstating it when you say Apple shipped “a lousy Apple Maps experience.” I’ve read a lot of comments on the app and they seem to be split, with some saying they’ve had trouble with it and some saying it’s been a good experience (or even a very good one).

    Additionally I’ve read that turn-by-turn directions were at the top of the list of Apple’s customer requests, but Google wouldn’t let Apple have this feature in Google Maps. So introducing a product that does include turn-by-turn is the opposite of making a decision that “wasn’t in the best interests of its customers.” Let’s not get too cynical – it’s not helpful.

  • Polimon

    There was another option. Cook could have shipped Maps as a beta, and left the Google powered Maps app on the phone. Best of both worlds?

  • LAViking

    I agree that the current experience may rely heavily on your geographic location. I routinely use Apple’s new iOS Maps in the Los Angeles area and have had NO issues and definately no more than I had with Google’s offering. I am sure most of the issues are related to outlying areas or rural spots and this will get fixed over time. Data aside the technical improvements Apple’s new Maps brings to the table far outpace what Google’s version provided. the fluidity and integration into iOS is significantly more advanced and more pleasant to use. The data will catch up. To me this has been blown out of proportion. There really isn’t anything tha bad aside from a handful of location POI gaffs that have been publicized by every news outlet making it seem like they are more than ther are.

  • Walt French

    @Patrick, you’ve let the Kommentariat run away with your thinking.

    Apple Maps now has, per essentially universal acclaim, a fine turn-by-turn tool, which before it did not, and was guaranteed NEVER to have. Turn-by-turn is hardly the end-all, be-all of maps, but it IS a very important function for many, both a buying criterion AND a safety function.

    Apple Maps now responds notably more quickly over a 3G connection (using less data) and the maps are attractive. This was guaranteed NOT to happen had Apple stayed beholden to Google’s methodology, which has too many disparate devices and so can’t optimize display the same way.

    There are many complaints about the new Maps’ accuracy, but it’s patently obvious that Google is not 100%, either. The last time I used iOS5′s (Google-based) Maps, it sent me to a location 8 blocks away from the restaurant’s address. (Fortunately, we had a printed map for tourists and found the actual intersection.)

    The new Maps is a Version 1.0 product, and has the rough edges associated with one. But I, for one, do not want to live in a world where Monday morning quarterbacking prevents firms from taking the chance on innovations.

    • Stu Mitchell

      No. There is a vast difference between Google Maps and Apple Maps. And It’s all about the data quality. People depend on iPhone maps. You might not, but others do. I depend on it, and I don’t use it as a turn-by-turn navigation tool. I read maps as if it were a paper map. Yeah, a bit old school, but there are others who do the same.

      You’ve got to couple this with the level of functionality and richness of data that Google Maps provided. Google had Search under their wing, which enriched the data on which GM was built. Apple doesn’t have this. It’s a missing link. Nor does it have Streetview. Not useful for me, but will be useful for others – such as people that perform deliveries, or survey areas. It’s all part and parcel.

      Apple have set the expectation level so high now that anything less than equal replacement is seen as bad. And this is far less than an equal replacement.

      Maps is a version 1.0 product, but people expect more from Apple and they expect more from a tool that’s needed on a day-to-day basis, unlike Siri which is effectively a plaything. Siri will be solved via clever programming. Maps will be solved by a LOT of data quality improvements from the field – or by reinstating Google Maps.

      • Days

        You can still use google maps on ios, just brows it and put a link on your home screen, problem solved.

        • steve_wildstrom

          Yes and no. You certainly can install Google Maps as a Web app on your iPhone. I’ve done this and it works fine. However, anything that calls on the mapping APIs will still default back to Apple Maps. For example, if you click on an address to get a map, you will always get an Apple map.

  • http://search.websonar.com:8080/ Duane Bemister

    It seems that apple is not the only one to ship before ready. Maybe you should try proof reading your articles before posting.

  • FalKirk

    Consumer Reports has this to say about Apple maps:

    “Overall, Apple impressed our staff with the graphic presentation for the interface, results, signage, and points of interest info. However, there is less customization throughout than Google — a mixed blessing when driving, where distractions can be dangerous. Google comes across as more business like and less fun.”

    Consumer Reports concluded that both “the free Apple and Google navigation apps provide clear routing directions” and both “provide a good solution for standard software.” Consumer Reports added that Apple may have “a less-mature product,” but it expects the application to improve over time.”

    The whole map saga sounds like a tempest in a teapot to me.

  • 47wing

    I think Maps matters when I am searching for a Houston Chinatown address and the map wants to send me to San Francisco Chinatown location. Just a small detail for some but a lost business appointment for me.

    • gdavid2

      Be sure to type in the name of the city. I’ve found that Maps does not default to the area in which the iPhone is currently located. Works easily after that.

    • steve_wildstrom

      So what are you entering as a search term? Are you giving a Houston street address and being routed to SF? A business name? Google often misses too when you really make it guess. And my car nav system wants a state and city to search.

  • kiowavt

    So far I have had 100% good fortune and no “wrong information” on the new IOS6 maps. I have not used it as much yet as I did the google version, where I did sometimes have some pretty amusing issues. Wrong turns, directions I knew were inefficient. One has to expect that on map programs to some extent. I was fine with the Google version, but feel I have not lost out at all on the iOS6 version so far. I wish I had saved my Google maps issues, not to lambast them, but because I think so far comparisons are based on looking for screw ups as much as anything.

  • http://www.47project.com Rich Harris

    Apple maps actually started as a French art installation project. http://www.puppetshed.com/comedy/videos/flyover-the-art-installation-built-into-ios/

    • Grwisher

      You definitely have a twisted mind. I like it. Very, very funny.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_WTHOMHZSMJDKIBZ7CNEPYNWJVM Bob B

    I really hope that Apple doesn’t become a company that bends to the whims of investors. Steve Jobs has been quoted as saying that they make products for people, not shareholders. Shareholders have been itching to get further inside of the company, where they really don’t need to be. Look what the meddling has done with companies like Dell & HP.
    Apple has been doing ok. They’ll recover from this. Maps will improve, and there are a dozen other mapping apps in the app store right now. in fact, iTunes even has a section for “Maps for iOS” now.
    The point of interest database is something that will improve too, but hopefully not be cluttered like Google’s has started to become. I don’t really want to know every “independent Mary Kay consultant” in my neighborhood (seriously, they were showing up all over the place, and “home based businesses” like Scentsy too) and when I tell TomTom that I need help, it shouldn’t show me a list of podiatrist offices, just 24/7 emergency facilities.
    Apple isn’t alone there at all, but people hold them to higher expectations..especially those that are itching to pen articles about their ‘failures.’ Like the articles about how the iPhone 5 sales have “disappointed.” *WHOSE* expectations? Analysts at Barclays? Analysts have been wrong about a lot of releases, especially product launches. Just because some guy behind a desk has decided that Apple should have sold 6 million devices doesn’t mean it’s a “disappointment” when they announce they only sold 5 million. “Only” 5 million the first weekend.

  • FalKirk

    This is a great point.

  • FalKirk

    “Apple Maps Flap Hasn’t Sapped IPhone Sales” ~ Barron’s

    The only people that matter – iPhone buyers – are telling us that this controversy doesn’t much matter to them.

    • AdamChew

      I believe in many markets/countries they are sold out.

      I tired to order one online but it didn’t go through because of some credit card issue and when I went to the site again they are no longer available.

      As for Apple Maps being judge I believe this is the more obvious reason and there is a link the real thing –

      http://tech.fortune.cnn.com/2012/07/05/the-apple-slingshot-revisited/

  • http://www.yourmaclifeshow.com/ Shawn King

    “There are really only two different and mutually exclusive ways this can be explained:”

    Or 3) Apple is a very insular company and didn’t test the Maps application in areas outside of their home base and didn’t test with enough people. In the general geography of where the Apple campus is, Maps works great. Less so in other regions, cities and countries.

    So obviously, there are more than just the two ways. But it’s easier to fit your supposition to the (perceived only – no one knows) “facts” as you understand them and draw conclusions based on that bad data.

    • steve_wildstrom

      I think there’s a lot to that, Shawn. I have long believed that Apple software suffers from inadequate beta testing, largely as a result of the company’s penchant for secrecy, which results in software going into production with serious bugs. In the case of maps, the evidence suggests it was thoroughly tested in the Bay Area, but not in many other places. Certainly, the Washington area map data suggests little or no on-the-ground testing, or something as basic as a fundamentally borked route to Dulles Airport and the misplacement of the Washington Monument surely would have been noticed.

      • http://www.yourmaclifeshow.com/ Shawn King

        “In the case of maps, the evidence suggests it was thoroughly tested in the Bay Area, but not in many other places.”

        I was at the WWDC when Maps was intro’ed and every developer I spoke to pointed out how crappy Maps was. Weeks/months later, I stayed in touch and none of them had changed their opinion. *Many* people knew Maps was going to be released in an “unfinished” form. I remain surprised that Apple didn’t go the Siri route and simply call Maps a beta – it would have ameliorated much of the criticism.

  • http://www.tumblr.com/blog/his-divine-shadow His Shadow

    I applaud Apple for its admission, but Apple should never shipped it.

    You are wrong, for reasons that other Apple watchers have already pointed out. Reasons that are obvious if you have any familiarity with the Apple Jobs rebuilt.

    • mhikl

      Exactly, HS. Data gathering demands good data and an important route to such is from travel use. Tis one way vehicular mapping services fine tune.

  • jfutral

    If anyone has been an Apple investor for any length of time, this is the life of being an Apple investor. Apple doesn’t reinvent the world, analysts freak, stock prices drop, I add to my portfolio. Prices creep back up past where they dropped as calmer heads and solid balance sheets/strong fundamentals prevail.

    Some issue pops up that makes it seem like Apple lost their mojo, analysts freak, stock prices drop, I add to my portfolio. Prices creep back up past where they dropped as calmer heads, solid balance sheets and strong fundamentals once again prevail.

    Investing in Apple is not for the faint of heart or the weak minded as Wall Street does its best to play Jedi mind tricks.

    Joe

  • http://www.tumblr.com/blog/his-divine-shadow His Shadow

    Apple’s stock hit a massive hit this week,

    Poor Apple. With the Maps fisaco, it’s stock price has fallen to levels not seen since, errrr…

    Sept 11th 2012.

    Stop using the stock price as an indication of anything more than the whims of stock manipulators.

    In fact, I would be delighted if the whole point of Apple’s cash hoard was to some day take the company private and say goodbye to the criminals on Wall Street.