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article imageApple has made 2.5m corrections to Maps in the past four years

By James Walker     Feb 16, 2016 in Technology
Apple's own mapping service, Apple Maps, arrived famously broken at its launch with some serious errors that led to authorities branding it unsafe for use. Since then it has evolved dramatically, helped by 2.5 million corrections.
In 2012, a frustrated Apple decided it didn't want to be dependent on Google to power the iPhone's Maps app. Instead, it went off on its own path, creating its own app and gathering the necessary data to build a fully-fledged rival to Google Maps. At least, that was the plan.
In practice, it didn't turn out too well. The app became known as one of few Apple products ever to be dead on arrival. CEO Tim Cook was eventually forced to apologize in an open letter and ultimately fired the executive responsible for the app's limited functionality and poor accuracy. Apple did its best to patch the potentially fatal mapping errors as soon as possible.
It didn't give up hope on Apple Maps, however. Over the past four years, the app has evolved considerably. The inaccurate data has largely been eradicated and the interface updated to be more usable. In December 2015, Apple announced that the service is now three times more popular among iPhone users than Google Maps, proving that it has successfully turned around what could have been one of its most spectacular software disasters.
The International Business Times reports that Apple SVP Eddy Cue revealed how this was possible during a talk-show feature with Daring Fireball's John Gruber. He said the company has fixed over 2.5 million errors in Apple Maps since launch, amounting to over 50,000 revisions every month.
"We've corrected more than 2.5 million customer feedback that we have gotten from customers directly to maps that we have corrected and notified them back that we fixed them," Cue said. The company has clearly been busy since Apple Maps' early days, a good thing given some of the criticisms aimed at the initial version of the software.
Hopelessly inaccurate Apple Maps directions to the Fairbanks Airport carpark took users along a taxi...
Hopelessly inaccurate Apple Maps directions to the Fairbanks Airport carpark took users along a taxiway used by aircraft and leading to the main runway - on the opposite side to the terminal
The Telegraph
From overlapping road junctions to directions to Fairbanks International Airport that took drivers across the main runway, users quickly discovered that the service wasn’t quite what Apple had promised — a competent rival to Google Maps.
When the app started leading "a number" of motorists deep into an Australian national park and then abandoning them, the police warned it could be a danger to life. Apple had placed the city of Mildura in the centre of the park, where temperatures can exceed 46 degrees Celsius.
The issues are now largely cleared up though and Apple Maps is relied on seriously by millions of iPhone users. Apple is continuing to develop the service further, expanding the app with new features and updating its mapping data to further increase precision.
This week, the company announced it is opening a new technical centre and development office in Hyderabad, India. A key function of the $25 million investment will be housing members of the Maps team and extending the app. Over 150 employees are expected to work on the service from the campus.
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