Apple iMap: Aussie QA/Developers to be Hired to Fix Problems

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By Ryan Inoyori | February 26, 2013 1:59 PM EST

Apple Maps is still confusing to use, and it has caused several incidents in 2012, not to mention misleading people to drive into the middle of the forest. The application's flaw led Apple to include Google Maps available for download as an alternative for users using iOS devices in other areas not yet covered by the app.

In 2012, Apple Maps displayed its unreliability which led to several people be stranded at the Murray-Sunset National Park for 24 hours under scorching heat. Police in Australia urged motorists not to rely on the mobile application. The incident led to Apple's CEO Tim Cook issuing a public apology and firing of the developer responsible for it.

Apple eventually fixed the issue but the company still suffers slow mapping improvements which explains the presence of a "Report a Problem" button on the app.

Another major problem of the Apple Maps back in the last quarter of 2012 was the My Butt location. My Butt is a restaurant that can be found in the middle of the Tenderloin District in San Francisco according to Apple Maps. But Google Maps revealed the truth behind the mysterious location, and surprisingly, it is just an empty parking lot next to Pandora karaoke bar.

"I hope I don't sound too cheeky but I am really going to be pushin' My Butt into your face, since it really is a classy place", a Yelp reviewer's commented, quoted Mashable.com. One of the possible ways for this fictional restaurant to exist is the relationship between Yelp to Apple which means Yelp reviewers themselves might have created the said establishment. However, it is doubted since a real My Butt restaurant does not exist on the Yelp homepage.

Both Apple and Yelp are still digging to find the reason how My Butt suddenly popped up and who are the people responsible for any hacking or manipulation in the system.

In YouTube, a video from the user "notebooks" posted the dangers of Apple Maps during a medical emergency compared to Google Maps. In the video, Apple iOS 6 maps displayed several medical establishments but hardly describes them from each other unless the user clicks the name. In comparison to Google Maps, establishments' names are complete, including the word "hospital" and it display more locations than Apple Maps.

To address one of the three problems, Apple decided to ask for help from Australians by inviting them to be a part of the Apple Maps development. A job posting from the Apple website in the "Jobs at Apple" page said it was hiring Maps Ground Truth Data Specialists.

The post includes the job summary, location which is at Sydney, New South Wales, and the key qualifications to be accepted.

The tasks of which the data specialist includes being responsible over quality handling of map data for the region, providing feedback on unique local map requirements, collecting ground truth information, and evaluating competing products.

The applicant must have enough knowledge in mapping, testing skills, and local expertise to help Apple create and build better mapping system. Australia would be the first to benefit once this map development becomes successful and probably prevent Aussies who use the iMaps from getting lost.

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