Photo: The Amazing iOS 6 Maps
When Apple launched the original iPhone, one of the biggest complaints about the phone was that it was awful for making phone calls.Apple did not bear the brunt of this criticism, though. It was its cellular partner AT&T who was, and continues to be, trashed for bad performance.
Similarly, now that Apple’s Maps are getting panned by people, its primary map data partner TomTom is also getting trashed.
Earlier this week, the CEO of Waze, an upstart mapping company, called TomTom the “the weakest player” in the maps industry, adding, “What’s going to happen with the Apple maps, is that you’re literally not going to find things. When you do find them, they might be in the wrong place or position geographically. And if you do have it, the route to it may not be the optimal route.”
And that seems to be what’s happening for a lot of people. Apple’s maps are the number one complaint about Apple’s new iPhone and iOS 6, the new mobile software.
Before the trash talking gets too out of hand, TomTom is sticking up for itself, saying that it’s up to Apple to decide how the data gets used, but that TomTom’s data is not flawed.
In a press release titled, “TomTom stands by the quality of its Map Data,” the company says, “For over 20 years TomTom has provided high quality and accurate map data.”
It continues, saying, that manufacturers take that map data, and “create their own unique application, which defines the user experience.”
We spoke with Eszter Pattantyus, SVP of Maps Product Unit at TomTom. She reiterated this statement, telling us that Apple isn’t relying strictly on TomTom data. Apple’s maps list two dozen partners, which means it’s blending TomTom data with other data and its own proprietary data. Somewhere in that blending process mistakes could happen.
To underscore the idea that it’s not TomTom’s fault people are unhappy with Apple Maps, in its press release it says, “TomTom’s map data is the foundation of our own smartphone application, which consistently gets high consumer ratings in the iTunes App Store.”
In other words, when we do mapping applications on our own, people like it. When Apple does it, people are unhappy. You figure out who to blame.
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Here is what the new maps app looks like:
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