Our Apple overlords finally announced the arrival of the iPhone 5 this morning and we couldn’t be more excited to shell out another $200 for the privilege of owning an annorexic version of something that we already have. But there’s a major problem with the iPhone 5 that’s much sadder than ending your press conference with an acoustic Foo Fighters performance. Google Maps is going away with the introduction of iOS 6 and will be replaced with Apple Maps.
Oh, what’s that? Everything Apple makes is perfect and works seamlessly into your life? Not if you’ve enjoyed using your phone to get around the city.
A Hacker News commenter who’s been beta testing Apple Maps in New York reports Blackberry-esque functionality:
To talk about the software, I’ve been using Apple Maps in beta for the past couple of months, and having no transit directions while living in NYC is enough for me to consider a switch to android.
Trying to take the subway to unfamiliar parts of the city forces me to use google maps in the browser. Addresses seem to be hit or miss — I’ve often spent time searching for an establishment or address just to give up and use google maps in the browser.
I’ve basically had to revert to how I got around the city prior to having a smartphone — use my computer and remember how I need to get there before I leave.
Apple Maps is potentially a huge fail for anyone living in a major city.
Steve Cheney, head of business development at GroupMe, is practically quaking at the (lack of) possibilities.
Living in NYC, I am terrified of iOS 6 / iPhone 5 for this one reason news.ycombinator.com/item?id=4512316
— Steve Cheney (@stevecheney) September 12, 2012
For all of the iPhone 5’s upgrades and improvements, mapping (a primary use case for a computer in your pocket) has taken a turn for the way worse. Buzzfeed John Herrman, who has been testing the service for awhile, says:
But it’s actually worse, in a lot of ways? Like it doesn’t do public transit directions. It uses Yelp for restaurants and stores and points of interest, which seems to be missing a lot. I’ve been using it for a few months and it’s been pretty frustrating.
Besides switching to Android, your options are downloading a bunch of apps to make up for the lost functionality: HopStop for subway directions, AT&T for Navigator for walking directions, and Foursquare for better location based recommendations.
If not, there’s always a compass. No rapture required.