Apple (Partially) Fixes Australian Map IssueBy: Josh Wolford - December 11, 2012
It appears that Apple has made some adjustments to their beleaguered Maps product after it was accused of leading Australian motorists into a prickly situation.
Yesterday we told you that local police in Mildura were warning people to be wary of Apple Maps when attempting to navigate to their town, as the directions were a little bit less than ideal. By that I mean Apple Maps was leading people into the middle of a desolate national park.
Instead of being directed to Mildura, motorists were being taken to the middle of Murray-Sunset National Park, and 6330 sq km park in Victoria, northwest of Melbourne.
“Tests on the mapping system by police confirm the mapping systems lists Mildura in the middle of the Murray Sunset National Park, approximately 70km away from the actual location of Mildura,” said police.
Although Murray-Sunset sounds nice enough, the park features some remote areas where people were reported to have become stranded, without food or water. The temperature can reach a scorching 114 degrees Fahrenheit at times, and police said that at least one person had to be rescued from the area after walking a good distance to find cell reception. Apparently, the news stories that declared Apple’s product a danger to human life did their job, as Apple has made an overnight correction to their Maps.
But it hasn’t totally fixed the problem.
According to The Australian, Mildura police inspector Simon Clemence says that Apple has fixed the routing issue for people coming from South Australia. But…
“If you’re coming from Melbourne it still puts Mildura in the middle of the Murray-Sunset National Park,” he said. “They have half-fixed the problem. So, it would appear that the only people that are going to get lost in the middle of the Murray-Sunset National Park now are people from Melbourne. People from Adelaide will find their way to Mildura just fine.”
Apple Maps have been chastised for their errors since the launch with iOS 6. They are so problematic that CEO Tim Cook felt the need to apologize for them and suggest that people use other mapping options until Apple can work out the kinks. As long as they are leading people dozens of miles into the scorching-hot bush, it will probably be a while until users feel comfortable using Apple’s first stab at a maps product.
We’ve reached out to Apple for comment but have yet to hear back.