For example, my Post colleague Michael Rosenwald let me know that a search for “The Washington Post” last night pulled up almost every newsstand in downtown D.C., but the marker at The Post’s offices served up the name of someone who’s worked with our newspaper. Subsequent searches showed results from different people — and different times. Searching for The Post’s address, I once got a result for the Los Angeles Times-Washington Post News Service. That partnership ended in 2009.
Also, according to Maps, I live in a parking garage.
Across the globe, users are reporting that the app doesn’t properly place landmarks or misplaces smaller towns. As Barry Schwartz at Search Engine Land wrote, Ireland’s Minister for Justice, Alan Shatter, wrote to Apple to remove an airplane symbol from the middle of Dublin’s Airfield farm, garden and cafe.
It’s too bad, really, because the rest of iOS 6 is very solid. The small tweaks that Apple’s made to the user interface are attractive and sensible. Features they’ve added such as the ability to add photos or video to e-mails, set up different e-mail signatures, send Facebook updates or set a “do not disturb” period make the phone genuinely more useful.
I particularly like the ability to ignore a call with a preset message — “I’ll call you back in an hour!” — or set a reminder to call someone that you had to screen. And the fact that Siri can open apps means that Apple’s addressed one of my biggest gripes about the personal assistant. If it gets the ability to answer calls on speaker and control call volume, I’ll consider it a much better daily tool.
The camera software, too, gets a big bump that lets you take panoramic phots on the iPhone 4S (and upcoming iPhone 5) with a sweep. I couldn’t take anything that breathtaking from my apartment, but those extra degrees are sure to come in handy on my next trip.
I’m not as big a fan of the redesigned App Store, which changes app lists to a grid-like outline. The change makes it easier to look deeper at a few apps, but difficult to scroll though a lot of apps quickly. I find it more difficult to use.
I didn’t get the chance to fully explore Passbook, which is supposed to be your digital wallet for loyalty cards, movie tickets and plane tickets. It seems most other reviewers are also reserving judgement on Passbook for now.
Another good addition to the iPhone is a new privacy menu in the settings, which lets you see exactly which apps are looking at your contacts, calendar, reminders, photos, location and Twitter or Facebook accounts.
Okay, but back to Maps.
The program is, undoubtedly, a work in progress. As evidence of that, a search this afternoon for The Post pulled up The Washington Post’s Yelp review — a much better result.