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Apple's Road to Better Mapping
By: Greg Dorn
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What happens when you release a product that bombs on a scale of epic proportions? The answer is simple: you pick yourself up, dust yourself off, and hit the road running. It may be a long road ahead, but Apple has been inching closer and closer in improving the ridiculed Apple Maps. The progress may be minimal, but it’s comforting to know that we may soon see a light at the end of the tunnel (no pun intended).
 
Apple went into serious damage control mode upon the release of iOS 6, when Google’s mapping service got the heave-ho in favor of Apple Maps. The lack of such amenities like street-view and transit directions, and major landmarks disappearing into thin air, did not sit well with the iPhone faithful. The good news: Apple has been making some serious strides in bringing their version of Maps to its fullest potential.
 
Let us first remind ourselves that Apple famously holds over $130 billion dollars in its vaults. This money literally serves as a piggy bank for a rainy day, or for investor dividends and constructive acquisitions, if that sounds easier to swallow. One such example is Apple’s purchase of indoor mapping startup WifiSLAM. The move is an obvious reaction to Google’s indoor GPS capabilities in places like malls and sports arenas. With the sale falling in the $20 million range according to the Wall Street Journal, it barely leaves a dent in Apple’s deep wallet.
 
While acquiring companies for their data and talent make headlines, Apple has secretly been tinkering away in their labs to fix various bugs and flaws. The benefits may not be as evident as snatching up a major company, but rest assured Apple Maps will only get better and more accurate.
 
For example, those major landmarks that oddly vanished from sight have gradually been reappearing. Major updates such as satellite imagery have greatly enhanced Apple’s not-so-bad-to-begin-with turn-by-turn navigation. And Apple has made some major developments in China’s roads, locations, and mapping systems. Given the fact that Apple has long been in the works to get the iPhone on the world’s largest mobile network, China Mobile, that is some top-notch prioritization.
 
I wouldn’t candidly sit here and say I don’t use Google Maps for functionalities where Apple clearly lags behind. Google’s iOS app sits comfortably next to my Apple Maps icon. But for the Apple fan boys and girls who root for Apple’s success, we can’t help but hanker for the day when we can officially and confidently delete Google Maps from our iPhones. 


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About the Author
Greg Dorn is a blogger, writer, and obsessed with everything technology and social media. Greg is absolutely captivated with the recent advancements in mobile gadgets, making our world more seamlessly connected. You can learn more about him on his own blog here
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