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But having more thoroughly tested Apple Maps alongside a Samsung Galaxy S3 running Android 4.0.4 (Ice Cream Sandwich) with Google Maps, we have a more favorable opinion–certainly more favorable than comments and articles that we’ve been reading online.
Using vectors also results in much less data use (an estimated 80 percent less), as your iPhone can download large areas of maps faster (eating up less of your data plan and battery).
The efficient outlines can also work offline far further after you lose your data connection. For example, while iOS 5 Maps would load Google’s map tiles of the immediate area being browsed at a couple zoom levels for offline browsing (generally less than a 10 mile radius), Apple’s new vector maps, once loaded in San Francisco, allowed us to browse an entire continent of high level maps (state outlines) while offline, north from Anchorage, Alaska to Lima, Peru and from Honolulu, Hawaii to Montréal, Canada.
At a highway level detail, we could actually navigate most of California, and on a simplified level, the western half of the United States. There were detailed street-level maps available of areas we’d never even looked at while online, as far away as Salt Lake City, Utah (about 740 miles or 1200 km east). Thanks to vectors, you can even view these offline maps in 3D perspective.
While improvements have been ongoing, MacRumors forum members yesterday began noticing what appears to be a larger set of additions to the 3D content in the Maps app, including both the satellite/aerial imagery and the standard maps. One region that was among the first to be noticed was the New York City area, with a number of improvements including new 3D imagery of the Statue of Liberty being seen.
According to a survey survey from Mike Blumenthal (via AppAdvice), conducted using the Google Consumer Surveys tool, most users don’t consider the iOS maps “problems” to be a significant issue. Over half of the respondents thought iOS 6 Maps isn’t a step down at all, while another 23% felt the app was “good enough,” despite having a few issues.
While the survey only covers 168 people, the results are interesting – and well in line with what I’ve found when discussing the iOS 6 Maps app with people who have actually used it. There are a small number of seemingly major errors in the app – but Apple is quickly correcting the inaccuracies, and in reality, only a very small number of people are actually affected by Apple’s young and unrefined Maps data.
Piper Jaffray’s Gene Munster, the same Munster who predicted 10 million iPhone 5 sales (and all the HDTV predictions), is out with the firm’s semi-annual survey of device ownership among teens. AllThingsD has the survey results of 7,700 U.S. teens included, showing a 34 percent increase in iPhone ownership and a lot of interest in a $300 iPad mini:
40 percent own iPhones (up from 34 percent six months ago).
62 percent plan to buy an iPhone in the next six months (22 percent said their next phone would run Android).
44 percent own a tablet (up from 36 percent six months ago).
Of those who own tablets, 72 percent own iPads.
Of those who do not own tablets, but plan to buy one in the next six months, 74 percent hope to buy an iPad.
43 percent said they’d be more likely to buy an iPad if Apple released a smaller version of the device at $299.
UPDATE: Foxconn has issued a statement denying reports that the was crippled by a strike, and saying that its production is on schedule at an important time for Apple.
Foxconn said the issues that occured on October 1–2, and were “isolated incidents and were immediately addressed and measures taken, including providing additional staff for the lines in question.”
Consumer Reports had previously given the iPhone 5 a thumbs-up, but was awaiting the result of full testing of the device. The magazine gushes over the larger display, the “thinner and lighter profile,” 4G LTE, and even the new and improved Siri. Despite repeated complaints by iPhone 5 owners about the lens flare problem, Consumer Reports says that “excluding the phenomenal 41-megapixel camera we tested on the Nokia 808, the iPhone 5’s 8-megapixel camera is the best we’ve seen on a smart phone.”
Consumer Reports testers also found the turn-by-turn directions of the Maps app to be better than they initially reported, saying that “it generally provides clear guidance, including voice and on-screen directions.”
Bob Bowman, CEO of MLB Advance Media, told MarketWatch that 1,500 e-ticket buyers, or 12 percent, bought their tickets using Passbook. He was shocked: “That adoption rate really floored us – there is no question our fans want digital tickets.” This has to be just what Apple wants.
Industry sources indicated to the Guardian that they do not expect to see 3G-capable versions of the iPad mini. That would allow Apple to produce it comparatively cheaply and to limit the top price of the product, while retaining mobile broadband connectivity for its pricier iPad line.
Analyst Richard Shim told CNET that Apple will be launching its second Retina display MacBook Pro offering later this year, reiterating earlier reports suggesting the laptop would be released in fall 2012.
In a research note shared with AppleInsider, Barclays analyst Ben Reitzes believes TV remotes, not TVs themselves, may be key to Apple’s “next big thing.” Apple has more control to expand the total addressable market (TAM) for its mobile products, like the iPhone and iPad, than its competitors, and therefore has the ability to offer innovative software and hardware features at accessible prices.
Microsoft product manager Petr Bobek has confirmed that the software maker is planning to release native iOS and Android versions of Office 2013 next year. Speaking at a press event in the Czech Republic earlier today, Bobek told Czech site IHNED that native apps will be made available from March 2013.
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