Those of us who have upgraded from iOS 5 to iOS 6 have noticed a big change in the Maps app, which no longer pulls data from Google Maps. Apple’s new Maps application uses data from OpenStreet, which is not as detailed as Google Maps in most areas.
This discrepancy has left many users unhappy with Apple Maps, and even worse, some people are reporting glaring errors in the system.
For example, the Airfield Park in Dublin is a place where patrons will find gardens, a cafe, and a city farm, but Apple has it erroneously marked as an airport. Google Maps had it labeled correctly.
This has prompted Ireland’s Minister for Justice to contact Apple about the issue. He’s concerned that the error could be dangerously misleading for a pilot unfamiliar with the area.
In Scotland, there is missing data, as there are in many other parts of the world. Areas like the Highlands of Inverness, Thurso, Tain, and Nairn are all in black and white, though full-color satellite data was used by Google Maps. Other spots are obscured by clouds or rendered with low-resolution textures.
There are missing towns, missing locations, wrongly labeled areas, and locations that have been placed in the wrong spots. The switch has also removed transit travel, traffic information, and street view from millions of users.
Apple moved away from Google Maps as part of an ever growing feud between the two regarding the Android operating system, but that may have been a huge mistake for Apple. Many maps are far less detailed, like this one which shows a college campus map before and after.
Those of you who have used the Maps application have likely noticed a difference. At this point, it is far inferior to the Google Maps application, even in major metropolitan areas. While Apple Maps will likely improve over time, its debut has been nothing but disappointing. To see even more map errors, check out this tumblr site, which has an aggregation of photos.
If Apple’s Maps are inaccurate or missing data in your area, you can help to improve them. Launch Maps, hit Report a Problem, choose the issue, and send if off to Apple. You can use this functionality to fix locations, to report problems with images, or to fix street and search labels.