Apple Filling Out its 'Ground Truth' Mapping Team with New Regional and Local Job Listings

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Original poster
Apr 12, 2001
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As revealed in dozens of new job postings on its website, Apple is once again looking to improve its much-criticized Maps application by increasing the size of its team dedicated to verifying mapping data. The postings are for "ground truth" local experts and regional managers in a number of different locations around the world, including several in the United States, Brazil, Japan, the United Arab Emirates and Europe.

The job descriptions for the "Local Expert" roles are as follows:
The Maps team is looking for people with a passion for mapping, great testing skills, and deep regional knowledge to help us build better and better maps. In this position, you will be responsible for the quality assessment of Apple Maps for your region, including both data and map services.  You will monitor changes to our maps, provide feedback on unique local map requirements, collect ground truth information, and evaluate competing products.
The roles call for someone with a bachelor's degree or equivalent, prior experience in quality assurance and a "detailed knowledge of the unique features of your local area, including preferred place names, prominent businesses, public services, seasonal events, driving routes, landmarks, and road names".

The positions are clearly intended to help Apple improve the quality of its mapping service, which since its release has been plagued with problems, including mislabeled towns and cities, inaccurate driving directions, as well as establishments (such as restaurants and bars) which had been closed for years.

MacRumors first noticed Apple specifically hiring a ground truth expert in Australia back in February, with the company moving to hire managers for the program in March. With this latest batch of job listings, Apple is clearly looking to fill out its team with a variety of regional and local positions.

Apple's Maps issues in iOS 6 prompted an open letter by Tim Cook on the company's home page and are rumored to be one of the reasons why Scott Forstall, Apple's previous Senior Vice President of iOS Software, was ousted from the company back in October 2012. The company has acknowledged that it is working hard to improve its mapping services, which are coming to OS X Mavericks later this year.

In just the past few weeks, Apple has been revealed to have acquired small mapping firms Locationary and HopStop as it seeks to improve its own services.

(Thanks, Georgij!)

Article Link: Apple Filling Out its 'Ground Truth' Mapping Team with New Regional and Local Job Listings
 

RawBert

macrumors 68000
Jan 19, 2010
1,727
66
North Hollywood, CA
Apple Maps has improved a lot here in LA since launch. Good to see that the pursuit of accuracy in their maps is a priority. After all, what good is a map if not precisely accurate?
Street View would be nice too.
 

Oletros

macrumors 603
Jul 27, 2009
6,002
60
Premià de Mar
I suppose that the Madrid and Rome positions really means Spain and Italy because Barcelona and Milan (the job location) are 600km away from the position cities
 

jonnyb

macrumors 65816
Jan 21, 2005
1,177
1,038
Rye/London, UK
Excellent attention to detail
QA experience
Familiarity with evaluating map quality
At least five years'[missing apostrophe] experience living in the region of interest
Detailed knowledge of the unique features of your local area, including preferred driving routes, landmarks, and road names
Strong written and spoken English skills
 

rex3

macrumors member
Jul 20, 2009
48
0
"Ground Truth," as if there is an equally true "Map Truth" that might be in conflict with it. A bit Orwellian, no?
 

John.B

macrumors 601
Jan 15, 2008
4,135
646
Holocene Epoch
The Yelp POI location data is utter crap. They should've gone "all in" with a team like this the same day they made the decision to remove Google mapping data from the Maps app.

I'm not complaining that they are doing this, just that it took this long to get some traction around correcting POI location data.
 

theBB

macrumors 68020
Jan 3, 2006
2,453
3
Excellent attention to detail
QA experience
Familiarity with evaluating map quality
At least five years'[missing apostrophe] experience living in the region of interest
Detailed knowledge of the unique features of your local area, including preferred driving routes, landmarks, and road names
Strong written and spoken English skills
"Five years *of* experience" sounds much better than apostrophe. Next candidate please... :)
 

mknopp

macrumors member
Jan 27, 2010
31
0
Excellent attention to detail
QA experience
Familiarity with evaluating map quality
At least five years'[missing apostrophe] experience living in the region of interest
Detailed knowledge of the unique features of your local area, including preferred driving routes, landmarks, and road names
Strong written and spoken English skills
I guess the attention to detail and strong written English skills weren't necessary for HR. Or perhaps it is a test. If an applicant doesn't point out the error they aren't considered. :rolleyes: Nah!
 

merkinmuffley

macrumors 6502a
Dec 3, 2010
615
581
The Apple mapping mess is a lot better now than when first launched, I've found it quite good in the USA urban areas I've tried it in side by side with my wifes Android phone using Google maps. It's lacking in rural areas. I don't know many years they're behind Google in this effort, but it's not insignificant.
 

mknopp

macrumors member
Jan 27, 2010
31
0
I love how one person per country is apparently enough.
I think it is less one person per country than it is one person per major metropolis. Which, I honestly think is a bit backwards. Areas with large population densities are more likely to have errors reported through the app. They really should be focusing on giving feedback for reports (to let people know that they are listening and taking action) and focusing on less populated areas for verification. After all, they weren't hammered in Australia for having a missing pub in Sydney, but sending people into the middle of the desert.
 

Oletros

macrumors 603
Jul 27, 2009
6,002
60
Premià de Mar
I think it is less one person per country than it is one person per major metropolis.
No, at least in Spain the duties are for Madrid, the capital but the job location is Barcelona, the second largest city

The same for Italy and Germany.

One person per country being the job duties for the capital and the job location in the second city in the country
 

1080p

macrumors 68030
Mar 17, 2010
2,782
2,275
Planet Earth
How about just reading some of the reports users send through the app itself. I know I have sent a dozen myself about the same location and Apple still has not fixed it.
 

Georgij

macrumors regular
Mar 11, 2013
128
0
Apparently they prioritised all previous Ground Truth job postings, because they had almost 1 each day.
 
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