Apple Maps in Japan

Discussion in 'iOS 6' started by PaulTokyo, Sep 17, 2012.

  1. PaulTokyo macrumors member

    Jul 22, 2012
    This is definately a deal breaker for me. Here is what Shinjuku station in Tokyo looks like. Keep in mind this station is by far the world's busiest transport hub. The station was used by an average of 3.64 million people per day in 2007 probably even more today. There are well over 200 exits. The station has 35 platforms, but if connected stations are included, this gives a total of 52 platforms.

    So obviously this should be a reasonbly detailed map even for Apple. Unfortunately in IOS6 it looks like a map of the country side with no Station details at all. Last time I checked zooming in doesnt give any more detail for the station, actually zooming is not good as the station is so big you need to get a handle on the entire image.

    Going to be a lot of very unhappy campers here in Japan when they get their upgraded iPhone.

    Seriously waiting for a Google Maps App... actually the Maps App from Yahoo is ok, not great and flakey with wrong dorection etc but 1000% better than the rubbish Apple is releasing in Japan.

    Screen shots:

    IOS5 Maps:

    IOS6 Maps:
  2. ShaolinX macrumors member

    Sep 11, 2012
    I'll be travelling to Japan later this fall and I'm quite disappointed (but not surprised, upon reading feedback about the native Maps app in iOS6) to see this. Hopefully, Google will release their app soon.

    Are there any proper Japanese apps that would help supplement this? Or any you could suggest? I'm all ears.
  3. PaulTokyo thread starter macrumors member

    Jul 22, 2012
    There is a Yahoo Map that I found yesterday, it's free and has most of the details.
    It's missing a bunch of functionality but does has quick access for searches, i.e. ramen, restaurant, hospital etc.

    Still not good enough for me to upgrade yet, actually Yahoo has a huge opportunity to upgrade and market their app but go to remember we are in Japan so they are probably still having meetings and will release next summer...
  4. myMacRumors macrumors regular

    Aug 18, 2010
    Can you please tap the 3D button on lower left on IOS6 Maps and post.
  5. DoctorFedora macrumors regular

    Jun 8, 2010
    Are you running the GM? The route icons are the wrong shape (they should be hexagonal or triangular, rather than square or rectangular). Each revision has had access to a better map data beta server. I ask mostly because there's a lot more data on the iPhone iOS 6 GM than in your example screenshot (though admittedly, it's not quite as information-dense as the Google example was; I imagine the next year or so will see Apple closing the gap in Japan, and perhaps adding very important things to the maps like intersection names)
  6. kre62 macrumors 68020

    Jul 12, 2010
    Just go to in safari...

    Theres even an option to install the webapp on your home screen.

    That will do ya til an app comes along.
  7. Archer1440 Suspended


    Mar 10, 2012
    I certainly hope they do. This is the one thing that has me really concerned (travel to Japan 6x year) and I won't be upgrading iOS on my iPad till they get this at least to a useful level. I have one trip there tomorrow with my iPhone 4 and then for my October trip I will have the 5. If the map functions aren't useful it will be a great inconvenience.

    And I bet I'm not alone in this specific issue.

    Let's hope final iOS 6 fixes this.
  8. DoctorFedora macrumors regular

    Jun 8, 2010
    The GM is better, as mentioned, though not as information-dense as Google's map.

    Trust me, this is an issue for me, too, given that I live in Japan (in a part of the country that, to put it succinctly, isn't likely to get 3D maps for a looooong time).
  9. PaulTokyo thread starter macrumors member

    Jul 22, 2012
    Actually I'm not running ios6 (thank god) these are screen shots from japanese websites and a buddy of mine I met last week showed me his GM install on his iPad(yes he is a developer). I also looked at the hot spots like Shibuya, Ebisu, Ikebukero Ueno etc...just horrible, it's like im in nomans land. Count how many markers there are for Shibuya or Ebisu Station, so confusing without details.

    The 3D button did nothing but flat satelite images which I hardly every use in IOS5 so no big deal.

    I tried the maps from Safari and it's really really horrible to use. I'll use the Yahoo Maps App at a push but I will wait for real updates and stick with IOS5 for the short medium term.
    Actually I have the いつもNAVI app that I would probably use worste case that my iPhone4 dies and I have to upgrade.
  10. SprSynJn Guest

    Sep 15, 2011
    Paul, I recommend the MapFan app for when your いつもNavi app runs out. Works very well offline. This is the reason I'm not concerned about Apple's maps at this point. I'm sure they will get better in time.
  11. DoctorFedora macrumors regular

    Jun 8, 2010
    There's also the Mapfan app, if you want something with built-in locally stored maps. It does navigation as well, though you do need a data connection for routing.

    You're working on information that's based on an outdated beta, is the main thing to point out. The current GM version is much better than that frankly woeful old screenshot.
  12. TheMacBookPro, Sep 17, 2012
    Last edited: Sep 17, 2012

    TheMacBookPro macrumors 68020


    May 9, 2008
    At least with Apple Maps, you'll be able to find the entrance to Subnade quickly! :rolleyes:

    Seriously though, that looks pathetic. Does it at least still have POIs when searching (e.g. Jonathan's, Yodobashi, Bic Camera, etc), or are there next to no POIs as that map would indicate?

    I guess I'll continue to stick to my Android-based docomo phone, if only for Google Maps :(
  13. PaulTokyo thread starter macrumors member

    Jul 22, 2012
    cheers for the glimmer of hope. Can you post a screen shot of Shinjuku and Ebisu Stations with Surrounding areas as they are heavily used for me.

    Cheers for the tip on mapfan, I may pre-order online if all looks good!
  14. mavis macrumors 68040


    Jul 30, 2007
    Tokyo, Japan
    That's what I've done on my 4S, but 1) the resolution stinks (not Retina) and 2) there's no Street View, which I use several times a week. I've therefore decided not to update my iPad 3 until Google Maps is available ... again.
  15. jeremyshaw macrumors 6502

    Oct 29, 2011
    I'm surprised this conversation is still popping up. The maps are constantly improving. Does that mean Shinjuku station will suddenly gain detailed maps tomorrow? No, however, this won't be the first thread saying ios6 maps are a bad, then fading away as the maps update.

    This isn't the YouTube app, where iOS 1 got the same deal as iOS 5...
  16. PaulTokyo thread starter macrumors member

    Jul 22, 2012
    I guess it's popping up as people were saying wait it's not finished and all will be fine on release. I know there is still time to get it right but I doubt it as you say. When people say it will be fine, trust us, it's Apple and then pre-order iphone 5's only to be delivered rubbish then it's a massive deal considering how much we spend on the iPhone.
    that's why it pops up.
  17. mavis macrumors 68040


    Jul 30, 2007
    Tokyo, Japan
    Exactly. At first it was "it's a beta, don't expect it to be perfect!" but now that the GM is out we find that the maps are still horrible - not even remotely close to what we've gotten used to with Google Maps on the 3G/3GS/4/4S. So yeah, it's kind of a big deal.
  18. benguild macrumors 6502a

    Jul 29, 2003
  19. mavis macrumors 68040


    Jul 30, 2007
    Tokyo, Japan
    Thanks. I wish there was a way to get Street View back ...
  20. Strang0r macrumors member


    Aug 5, 2012
    I've been using ifindview for Street view while running the beta. it isn't perfect but it does what I need...
  21. ADR macrumors newbie

    Jun 1, 2011
    It's perhaps less of a big deal in other countries, but I rely on maps heavily in Tokyo. Streets don't have names and the quickest way to find a location is via subway exits or landmarks (convenience stores, etc.).

    The main reason this map of Shinjuku is extremely disconcerting is because you can save a huge amount of time by knowing which exit is best. If you look at the image from google maps, all of the little pink numbers (A3, B14, etc.) are the exits and extremely valuable. I've been going in and out of Shinjuku station for 2 years now, and it's always confusing. This says nothing about places I've never been.

    Besides the lack of station info, not having the building outlines (in fact, having a map of one of the greatest metropolitan areas in the world look like a golf course) is not going to make life easy.

    In the days before I had an iPhone, I used paper maps. They were more useful than these new Apple maps look to me.

    For practical purposes, I really cant justify upgrading the OS yet.
  22. Saladinos macrumors 68000


    Feb 26, 2008

    That's just staggering.

    Apple needs someone to go shout at the Maps team MobileMe-style. Who do Apple have left with those kind of chops?
  23. Wubby macrumors newbie

    Jun 21, 2010
    I knew this was going to blow in Japan and will not be updating my 4S to iOS6. I have a 5 on pre-order from Softbank but I'm thinking of cancelling and just waiting a year for the 5S or whatever. It's that important to me. Having that Google map app on my phone has saved me from getting lost so many times in this country. A slow data hungry web app isn't going to satisfy me and I doubt it will give as good of directions as the native app.
  24. ADR macrumors newbie

    Jun 1, 2011
    I thought I'd link to a Japanese website finding goofs within maps (I still can't get over how Shinjuku looks like a golf course). After all, it's easy to get into an American/English only mindset and not consider the substantial number of customers in other countries.

    Looking at these images worries me a bit about how Apple will integrate more density into these maps. The icons for restaurants, the brown little fork and knife (laughably western), if increased provide absolutely no visual information on quick glance. Likewise, using the same train icon for the metro and JR stations is not helpful (also, not connecting the related stations provides a terrible UI experience).



    The equivalent map in Google maps allows me to quickly identify train company (toei, metro, JR), the stations connected on a line, the MAJOR station, and even gives me all of the station names at a glance. Not being able to tell where Tokyo station is (or even be able to spot the difference between a huge station like Tokyo and a much smaller station like Yurakucho) is crazy.

    Imagine if Apple complies with requests for greater density, and the icons don't expand in variety—these maps will be a mess!

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38 September 17, 2012