Google Maps Designer Blown Away By Apple Maps

Sep 24, 2012 • 8:45 am | comments (18) by twitter Google+ | Filed Under Google Maps

iOS Apple MapsA Google Maps designer who worked with Apple on the original Google Maps app for the first iPhone was incredibly disappointed with Apple Maps. Why?

Well, he said he "remembers how difficult it was working with Apple" and I guess he expected a heck of a lot more from Apple on the Maps product.

I suspect Apple made Google do some crazy things before allowing them to be a standard app on the iPhone. In fact, I know Apple makes some app developers go through crazy loops to become a featured app. If you want Apple to vouch for you, you must live up to Apple's standards of quality.

Clearly, with the new Apple Maps, even Apple didn't live up to their own standards. Not even close.

So this Google engineer was blown away at how bad Apple Maps was on release. Not because he loves Apple, more likely because he knew what hell he and his team went through based on Apple making Google go through every little detail in their App to make it perfect for iPhone users.

Now for Apple to release something as bad as this, he is taken back.

Fred Gilbert of Google, who is now the head of design for social products, and I assume one of the leads on design of the Google Maps app back in the day, wrote on Google+:

As one of the original designers of Google Mobile Maps I remember how difficult it was working with Apple. But this just blows my mind.

If you miss Google Maps on iOS 6, see this story.

Forum discussion at Google+.

Previous story: Google News Turns Ten Years Old



09/24/2012 01:44 pm

Wow a Google employee jumping on the "We hate Apple for booting Google Maps out" ? Shocking I'll tell ya. Apple had to do their own maps morons, soon enough they will be improved.


09/24/2012 02:15 pm

Given the amount of negative feedback I have been hearing about the new Apple Maps, I'm afraid I don't follow. I've been using the Apple Maps App since the i0S 6 release with no complaints whatsoever. What's all the fuss about?


09/24/2012 03:29 pm

I have to agree. I have yet to see anything wrong with the Apple Maps app. Sure, the transit functionality requires another app, which you can get for free, but other than that, I've been content with it. I'd be interested in hearing what people dislike about it so I can see their perspective!

Sam Hollingsworth

09/24/2012 03:38 pm

I agree with MJAllDay15 .... I've had no problems, either. I live in NYC and travel all over NY State. No problems yet.

SCAD Student

09/24/2012 06:51 pm

No street view, no native transit, and missing information that google maps had. For example I am a student in Savannah, GA and none none of the SCAD buildings are listed on apple maps. They were on google maps. Also none of the square parks in Savannah are labeled on Apple Maps. They were labeled on google maps. It was useful to have them labeled because I would tell friends to meet me in a certain square and they could easily look it up on their maps app. Furthermore, voice navigation is only for iPhone 4S and above, but that's not really a surprise. Android has had voice nav for YEARS.

Trey McClure

09/24/2012 06:59 pm

Look I love apple products, but Apple Maps in an inferior application. Frankly it's a downgrade. Just look at the maps app on top of the line android phones. It's much more robust. Apple has major work to do.


09/24/2012 07:14 pm

I found that most the people who rip on Apple maps, don't use it. Android troll-dum.


09/24/2012 08:14 pm

The majority of problems are outside of US cities. So if you are outside of the contiguous US, you will not have the problems that most are having. Some of the problems are within the US, but most of the people complaining about the maps app are international. Read up on topics before putting your bias opinion out there regarding Android users as well Justin. I, for one, will not be upgrading to ios6 until a much more efficient version of a maps app is available, Apple or not.


09/25/2012 02:48 am

Exactly won't take long. Everything has to start somewhere. Look how bad Google + was at when it was released and look at it now... Oh wait it still sucks.. bad example!

A chap from Down Under

09/25/2012 04:59 am

"No street view, no native transit and missing information" - that's what Google Maps is on iPhone, if you come to Melbourne, Australia. So in case those are the only things which are missing in Apple Maps, then it is an improvement over Google Maps, as there is street view finally!

Blue Hat Marketing

09/25/2012 03:29 pm

OK so it's blown away in a BAD way! That makes more sense.


09/25/2012 04:55 pm

I live in Tokyo, and it's virtually useless. Almost every single station on the subway line I use is marked incorrectly. In fact, for some reason each station has two markers, both up to a kilometre apart, and both wrong. Building markers are virtually nonexistant, and most embarrassingly many places throughout Japan are displayed in Korean or even Chinese text. The US doesn't seem to have suffered that badly, but many non-US locations are simply incorrect or display information that is, in some cases, decades out of date.


09/25/2012 07:06 pm

I agree, I upgraded my parents Iphone 4s to IOS and Apple Maps killed my parents.


09/25/2012 07:18 pm


Richard Strong

09/26/2012 10:38 am

Apple designed the original iphone application with Google but heavily restricted the design. Google have never had any problems with their own maps application for Android.


09/27/2012 03:29 pm

I used google maps everyday, everytime i went out and whatnot, live in london so the driving part people keep harping on about as the awesome new feature means squat to me and most other londoners who depend on public transport in the crammed city, seconds to find a bus or train or even a nearby location like a supermarket was the most amazing thing, in fact i would say it was one of the top 3 reasons why i finally got an iphone 6 months ago, full price, because i knew it was something id use constantly since im always running around to different places, and iv only lived here for 2 years so theres lots thats still new to me, and was so impressed whenever my friends whipped out their google maps app, i have a very good sense of direction from years of non smartphone owning so its not that i cant find my way around, for people so cattily saying "cant you just read the map in the bus/train station, theyre all there", thats not the issue DUDES, its the split second convenience and information that i paid 500 pounds for thats just been ripped from me without due warning (apple cannot seriously expect every single person to be up to date with all their shenanigans), as such a prominent app, they really should have at least given people updating it a heads up before the update is fully processed, the same way that lets say an update to firefox always gives a warning to addons that dont fit with the new version before you finalize it, iv gratefully backtracked on firefox updates based on that one little courtesy before, i know with 200 plus updates they cant cover everything but like i said, google maps and youtube and other things are so widely loved that its really unfair to have ZERO warning while youre updating it, and then to make it virtually impossible to downgrade the ios or at least have the google maps app available as an extra download is really the final kick in the nuts of their supporters. iv become such a apple convert over the last few months and apple i DONT CARE that you want google out, i DONT CARE that youre control freaks who want to streamline everything, i DONT CARE that you want to make your own baby with apple maps, GO AHEAD cos my experience so far has been pretty damn great, if it was an awesome product no one would give a damn, in fact we'd probably all be cheering yet another apple triumph, but the fact is your new product at this stage just plain SUCKS(theres no other way to put it) for alot of people who depended on it, (moments like this i honestly wonder what jobs woulda done,would he even have approved this release) and yet youre forcing people to live with it with this sudden and worse TOTAL freezeout with no option at all but to wait months for you to get your shit together on an app i LOVELOVELOVE makes me want a divorce...


09/27/2012 03:33 pm

also, almost everyone iv seen complaining about the maps is giving very specific examples to why it sucks, like locations and whatnot that go wrong, so what in the world are you talking about, youre the troll for making things up


01/30/2013 02:50 am

ive owned an iphone 4 since day 1 and it was never worth the money. apple is fucking useless. i refuse to spend the money on the newer versions because i expect worthless shit from them. switching to android.

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