The new Maps in iOS 6 features several big changes worth taking notice of. There’s the 3D flyover mode, if it’s supported on your device, as well as turn-by-turn voice directions, but again, only on a limited subset of Apple hardware. The one big change that everyone’s getting is the new map data itself, on account of Apple breaking its mapping ties with Google. While that may be an important strategic move for Apple, users aren’t exactly applauding the change, as it’s rapidly becoming clear that the new Maps just doesn’t live up to expectations.
Google’s spent a lot of time and money fleshing-out its map data, making sure that not only is its survey of roads complete, but that it includes comprehensive data on businesses and attractions. In comparison, users are reporting plenty of gaps in Apple’s new data, putting some towns in the wrong places, while forgetting others entirely.
One of the biggest complaints seems to be how awful the new Maps is at doing location-based contextual searches. That is, if you’re right down the street from something and try to search for it with Maps, the app is just as likely to return results on something with a similar name, hundreds of miles away.
It’s not clear what, if anything, Apple intends to do about this dissatisfaction with Maps; after all, these same issues existed all through the iOS 6 beta period, and Apple still released things as-is.
Update: Check out this gallery of some of iOS 6 Maps’ more spectacular fails.