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iOS 6 Maps stranding Australian drivers, police say [u]

updated 09:28 am EST, Mon December 10, 2012

Map mistake forces government rescue operations

(Updated with news of Apple fix) Police in Victoria, Australia have issued a bulletin warning people about an error in iOS 6 Maps which is leaving people stranded. The bulletin notes that during the past few weeks, rescue operations have been needed for a number of people using iOS 6 to drive to the city of Mildura. The firmware is instead leading people into a part of Murray-Sunset National Park over 40 miles away.

Making the issue more than an inconvenience is that the park has extreme temperatures and little water, as well as bad cellphone coverage, sometimes forcing people to walk long distances to call emergency services. Some rescues have reportedly taken as long as 24 hours. No deaths have been recorded so far, however.

"Police have contacted Apple in relation to the issue and hope the matter is rectified promptly to ensure the safety of motorists travelling [sic] to Mildura," says a message on the Victoria police website. "Anyone travelling to Mildura or other locations within Victoria should rely on other forms of mapping until this matter is rectified."

The mistake may be the most serious one yet in iOS 6 Maps, which has proven an embarrassment to Apple since its release in September. People have regularly complained about mislabeled items and bad directions, as well as missing features and instances of poorly-rendered 3D. At least two key executives have been fired over the app, including iOS head Scott Forstall and the person in charge of Maps, Richard Williamson.

Update: The Guardian now says that Apple has corrected the location of Mildura.



By Electronista Staff
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Comments

  1. bobolicious

    Dedicated MacNNer

    Joined: 08-15-02

    It would seem no little plan, to accurately map the entire planet in 3D ?
    I have been led astray by the Garmin's Navigon, which is a dedicated gps producer, and for which I paid top dollar...
    Perhaps a 'beta' label might have been a better moniker...

  1. And.reg

    Mac Elite

    Joined: 02-22-04

    Classic Mapquest still works. I still prefer the method of studying a map routinely for weeks in advance and, if need be, asking for directions. I don't use GPS, and I'm not ready to have a device to tell me when/where to make turns, especially if my eyes or ears are attending to something else.

    Stories like these keep Delorian in business for things like 2013 road map books.

    As for 3D maps... I couldn't give a s***.

  1. daqman

    Junior Member

    Joined: 09-15-00

    The whole report seems a little "off". The implication is that people get lost and wander until they run out of fuel. But the park is only 40 miles away from the correct destination so if you found that you were on the wrong track it's only a few gallons of fuel different to backtrack and ask for directions. You would think that people wouldn't go wandering in the outback without a full fuel tank and something better than an iPhone to navigate with. Even if you did conclude the map was wrong couldn't you just follow your own tracks out of there?

  1. Grendelmon

    Dedicated MacNNer

    Joined: 12-26-07

    Way to go, Apple!

    Here's the actual police statement:

    Police concerned with Apple iOS 6 mapping system

  1. fashizzle

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: 08-19-03

    Your technology does your spelling. It does your math. It does your route navigation. What do you do for yourself? Eat and defecate (that word did not require a spell checker, but for many I'm sure it does). I have no sympathy for cretins like this. "Had to be rescued". Lol.

  1. apostle

    Junior Member

    Joined: 04-16-08

    What ever happened to "personal responsibility"? First Apple is sued over the 4G iPad because consumers were too lazy to do a little research.

    http://news.cnet.com/8301-13579_3-57449364-37/apple-settles-australian-ipad-4g-case-for-$2.25m/

    And now this.

    =0(

  1. Flying Meat

    Dedicated MacNNer

    Joined: 01-25-07

    That may be 40 miles "as the crow flies". Looking at the map provided, it could easily be 80+ miles by road. Through in an unmapped side road or two on the wrong road, and well, yer lost.

    This does beg the musical question, how much does Australia save annually by not putting clear road signs up? :

  1. Grendelmon

    Dedicated MacNNer

    Joined: 12-26-07

    Originally Posted by apostleView Post

    What ever happened to "personal responsibility"? First Apple is sued over the 4G iPad because consumers were too lazy to do a little research.
    http://news.cnet.com/8301-13579_3-57449364-37/apple-settles-australian-ipad-4g-case-for-$2.25m/
    And now this.
    =0(



    Ugh, it has nothing to do with "personal responsibility", and has nothing to do with "lazy consumers"... the commission found that Apple violated Australian law. Plain and simple.

  1. SierraDragon

    Mac Elite

    Joined: 03-22-04

    Only a fool would totally rely on cellphone service and/or apps to determine life-critical location in the outback of _anywhere_.

    The press rightfully have fun with the headline, but the (predictable) haters response simply validates haters' ignorance.

    Personally I love the new iOS6 Apple Maps which is far, far superior to the intentionally-lamed-by-Google version of Google Maps that Google foisted on Apple users. Of course I do not use cellphones for life-critical location info without verification (duh).

  1. blahblahbber

    Banned

    Joined: 02-01-05

    Originally Posted by SierraDragonView Post

    Only a fool would totally rely on cellphone service and/or apps to determine life-critical location in the outback of _anywhere_.
    The press rightfully have fun with the headline, but the (predictable) haters response simply validates haters' ignorance.
    Personally I love the new iOS6 Apple Maps which is far, far superior to the intentionally-lamed-by-Google version of Google Maps that Google foisted on Apple users. Of course I do not use cellphones for life-critical location info without verification (duh).

    Sometimes your life can and will need to depend on the use of technology in certain situations. What good is it if it isn't reliable? It is what it is. crApple has cracks in its foundations. Sad truth.

  1. wrenchy

    Forum Regular

    Joined: 11-03-09

    How embarrassing. Perhaps Apple should have: 1 - Left Google Maps on board for the time being. 2 - As Bobolicious suggested, introduced Apple Maps as "Beta" software. 3 - Not pushed the map install on the iPlatform (you download beta software, you take your chances...). Give your customers choice. Something that Apple is not used to doing. Perhaps the arrogant move of removing Google Maps and shoving your own half-baked solution down your customers' throat will come back to bite you in the rear.

    I use Android. Maps work for me and I have a choice if I want to use something else. Later!

  1. ricardogf

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: 01-13-03

    And WHO the heck cares about Mildura? Apart from a relatively prosperous eastern shore, Australia is little more than a desolate mining colony...and ANYONE relying solely on GPS mapping solutions for adventurous tourism deserves to get stranded.

  1. wrenchy

    Forum Regular

    Joined: 11-03-09

    Originally Posted by ricardogfView Post

    And WHO the heck cares about Mildura? Apart from a relatively prosperous eastern shore, Australia is little more than a desolate mining colony...



    Really now. Is that an appropriate thing to say? Are you a typical American where everything outside the continental US is irrelevant?

  1. blahblahbber

    Banned

    Joined: 02-01-05

    Originally Posted by wrenchyView Post

    How embarrassing. Perhaps Apple should have: 1 - Left Google Maps on board for the time being. 2 - As Bobolicious suggested, introduced Apple Maps as "Beta" software. 3 - Not pushed the map install on the iPlatform (you download beta software, you take your chances...). Give your customers choice. Something that Apple is not used to doing. Perhaps the arrogant move of removing Google Maps and shoving your own half-baked solution down your customers' throat will come back to bite you in the rear.
    I use Android. Maps work for me and I have a choice if I want to use something else. Later!

    Excellent. I use the Samsung SII international version and find that I get real highspeed 3G with AT&Ts own prepaid sim card with hotspot out the box. Never an issue and always heaven. Nothing but reliability and choice. What more can you want??

  1. technocrunch

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: 12-10-12

    How silly are people?

    Mildura is on a state highway - there are road signs why the heck can't people just follow the road signs?

    If you were travelling to Mildura surely you would have even a basic idea where you were heading - it is not like Mildura is somewhere millions visit each year - therefore you are driving on the highway and suddenly you find yourself off the highway in a National Park

    Which does't look anything like a township
    http://www.exploroz.com/images/Places/86630_0__TN800x600.jpg?_4620769

    surely you would just turn around and go back to the highway you were on and follow the SIGNs to Mildura

    http://www.ozroads.com.au/NSW/RouteNumbering/National%20Routes/79/mainpic.JPG

    I love this bit....
    sometimes forcing people to walk long distances


    so these people drove in somewhere but were not capable of turning around and driving back the way they came to get better cell coverage. give it up - I guarantee you if this had been an error in a Garmin map of a NavMan or whatever we wouldn't have even heard about it....

    The mistake may be the most serious one yet in iOS 6 Maps

    Mate - it is in country Victoria and a National Park - it is not directing people over a cliff in the Gobi Desert....

    remove the sensationalism from your story

    I heard an interesting thing the other day - we are so busy with being connected to our online community of friends that we are oblivious to the real community happening around us as we sit, walk or commute each day.

    My tip to folks travellng anywhere - Read the Signs....if you are unsure stop and ask people - you know what they are they look like you...though try to find one that doesn't have wires coming out of their head and their eyes focused on a tiny screen...


    TC

  1. mojkarma

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: 10-13-11

    Originally Posted by SierraDragonView Post

    Only a fool would totally rely on cellphone service and/or apps to determine life-critical location in the outback of _anywhere_.
    The press rightfully have fun with the headline, but the (predictable) haters response simply validates haters' ignorance.
    Personally I love the new iOS6 Apple Maps which is far, far superior to the intentionally-lamed-by-Google version of Google Maps that Google foisted on Apple users. Of course I do not use cellphones for life-critical location info without verification (duh).



    What's the difference between the processing power in a smartphone and a dedicated gps device?
    What's the difference between the map in ios and a dedicated map in a gps device?
    A smartphone today has more power than any spaceship in the eighties and probably nineties.
    Why shouldn't I rely on a cellphone service?

    You call people as fools because they used a service, and at the same time you know that the ios map is far superior to the intentionally lamed by Google version???

    Haters and fanboys are absolutely the same. It's the same coin and just a different side.

  1. Spheric Harlot

    Clinically Insane

    Joined: 11-07-99

    Apparently, the incorrect data came from an Australian GOVERNMENT DATA BASE, which listed two Milduras.

  1. And.reg

    Mac Elite

    Joined: 02-22-04

    Originally Posted by Spheric HarlotView Post

    Apparently, the incorrect data came from an Australian GOVERNMENT DATA BASE, which listed two Milduras.



    Doesn't matter, Apple's maps should have been intelligent enough to give people the option to choose the town over the park (and especially not make the park the default).

    http://www.macrumors.com/2012/12/11/apple-fixes-australian-map-error-that-caused-police-warning-issue-traced-to-official-gazetteer/

    I pity the drivers who never actually studied the "en route" directions in advance.

  1. SierraDragon

    Mac Elite

    Joined: 03-22-04

    Originally Posted by blahblahbberView Post

    Sometimes your life can and will need to depend on the use of technology in certain situations. What good is it if it isn't reliable? It is what it is. crApple has cracks in its foundations. Sad truth.



    Sorry but the reported flaws in v1 Apple Maps are not by any means what I characterize as "crApple has cracks in its foundations." Just v1 anomalies as is common with v1 from anyone. I do agree they perhaps should have called it beta for some localities, but in my experience CA-NV-AZ-UT-WY-CO Apple Maps has been great, a HUGE improvement over the lamed version of Google Maps in iOS5.

    What was/is crap is the intentionally lamed version of Google Maps that Google sticks Apple users with in iOS 5.

    -Allen

  1. Spheric Harlot

    Clinically Insane

    Joined: 11-07-99

    Police warn of safety concerns from [SIZE=4]Google Maps[/SIZE]

    Now police in Colac, west of Melbourne, say faults with Google maps are putting people's lives at risk along the Great Ocean Road and in the southern Otways.

    :5stars:

  1. SierraDragon

    Mac Elite

    Joined: 03-22-04

    Originally Posted by mojkarmaView Post


    What's the difference between the processing power in a smartphone and a dedicated gps device?
    What's the difference between the map in ios and a dedicated map in a gps device?
    A smartphone today has more power than any spaceship in the eighties and probably nineties.
    Why shouldn't I rely on a cellphone service?



    What I said was "...do not use cellphones for life-critical location info without verification (duh)."

    The reason "Why shouldn't I rely on a cellphone service" is because cell service can fail, especially during emergencies (duh). And GPS locating from all consumer devices sometimes have inaccuracies and/or failed service. For life-critical mapping one should supplement GPS with old school maps plus orienteering skills.

    Has nothing to do with Apple fanbois, just common sense.

  1. blahblahbber

    Banned

    Joined: 02-01-05

    Originally Posted by SierraDragonView Post


    Sorry but the reported flaws in v1 Apple Maps are not by any means what I characterize as "crApple has cracks in its foundations." Just v1 anomalies as is common with v1 from anyone. I do agree they perhaps should have called it beta for some localities, but in my experience CA-NV-AZ-UT-WY-CO Apple Maps has been great, a HUGE improvement over the lamed version of Google Maps in iOS5.
    What was/is crap is the intentionally lamed version of Google Maps that Google sticks Apple users with in iOS 5.
    -Allen

    Thanks crApple for the lawsuits that prohibit competition, and now that they got a bite back in their buttocks by google.... well, what more is there to say?

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