After the recent release of Apple’s iOS 6, the Cupertino-based company has been facing a lot of complaints about the new Maps app pre-loaded with the OS. The company decided to forego the use of Google Maps in favour of an app that was developed in-house. The app is receiving many complaints due to the high level of inaccuracies. Now, Google is working on getting the Google Maps app into the Apple App Store.
Originally, sources had told The Guardian that Google was working towards releasing the Google Maps app for iOS devices. The claims were then confirmed by iOS developer Steve Troughton Smith. According to a report by TechCrunch, Google aims to launch the Google Maps app on the App Store before Christmas.
Google working on getting Google Maps to iOS
Apple had released a statement to AllThingsD regarding the complaints that the company was facing for the new Maps app that was included in the iOS 6 update. According to the statement, “We are excited to offer this service with innovative new features like Flyover and Siri integration, and free turn by turn navigation. We launched this new map service knowing that it is a major initiative and we are just getting started with it. We are continuously improving it, and as Maps is a cloud-based solution, the more people use it, the better it will get. We’re also working with developers to integrate some of the amazing transit apps in the App Store into iOS Maps. We appreciate all of the customer feedback and are working hard to make the customer experience even better.”
Features of iOS 6 were unveiled during the Apple event earlier this month. One of the biggest changes to the operating system is the new Maps app. The new Maps app has a built-in search for local points of interest, with over 100 million possible suggestions. Other features of the Maps app include navigation, routing, 3D maps, satellite imagery – that wraps around the 3D maps – and the ability to get directions directly through Siri.
Speaking of Siri, the virtual assistant has gotten some updates of its own. The new Siri update includes the ability to give you scores and rankings of your favourite sports teams, the ability to launch apps directly through Siri, and integration with the movie review aggregation site – Rotten Tomatoes.
Though, the latest version of iOS is not without its problems, the major problem being availability. You can’t use the Maps app to get directions in a few countries, one of which is India. The list of countries where this feature is available is also quite smaller than that of the standard features. Turn-by-turn navigation, which is quite a localised feature, is also not available in many countries. The most restricted feature appears to be 3D Maps, which is available only in the USA. Traffic view is available in only 23 countries, while Business Reviews and Photos, can be used only in 15 countries. You can use Maps to search locally in 49 countries; this feature, too, is not available in India.
New features added to Siri are also limited to a few countries. None of the new features are available in India. You can use iOS 6’s Dictation feature in only a few countries too. Some of Siri’s new features such as Facebook and Twitter integration are limited to only a few countries, some of which are Apple’s key markets. Apple has not mentioned if and when it will bring these features to other regions as well.
As earlier, music or movies still can't be purchased in India using iTunes. The new iTunes, with many new features and increased cloud integration, allows residents of over 60 countries to purchase and download music and movies. TV shows on iTunes are available in only six countries.