Friday, October 5, 2012

Apple Maps Caches a Large Area For Offline Browsing

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Apple's new Maps application has an additional besides less data consumption, it also caches a much larger area for offline browsing, reports AppleInsider.

With Google Maps in iOS 5 you could only browse about a 10 mile radius when offline; however, the more data efficient vector maps in iOS 6 means you can view a far larger area when offline.

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.

Notably, Google Maps for Android does use vector graphics but the site found automatic offline caching is quite poor. Only 49 sq mi of San Francisco showed up after losing connectivity.

"Major highway routes degraded to a blocky mess within ten miles of our loaded location, and even city names disappeared after 40 miles (64 km). Highway 101 vanished into dead ends just 70 miles outside of San Francisco."

However, Google Maps for Android does let you manually save an area of about a 50 mile radius for offline viewing.

It's thought that if or when Google Maps comes back to iOS as a native application, its features will be similar to the Android version.







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Consumer Reports Says 'Apple iPhone 5 is a Winner'

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Consumer Reports says its completed its tests on the iPhone 5 and found the smartphone to be a 'winner'.

A larger, 4-inch display; a thinner and lighter profile; 4G LTE access; and a host of innovative features all helped the iPhone 5 move up in the ranks, surpassing not only the previous iPhone 4S but also a number of other new Android-based smart phones.

The iPhone 5 also improved on areas that the iPhone 4S did well, boosting the range of functions controlled by its Siri voice assistant, and making the already top-notch iPhone camera even better.

Notably, the report downplays criticism of the Maps application on iOS 6, saying that they expect any shortcomings to improve over time.


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Apple Remembers Steve Jobs With Video Tribute, Letter From Tim Cook

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Apple has posted a video and letter from Tim Cook on its homepage to remember Steve Jobs on the one year anniversary of his passing.

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A message from Tim Cook, Apple's CEO.

Steve's passing one year ago today was a sad and difficult time for all of us. I hope that today everyone will reflect on his extraordinary life and the many ways he made the world a better place.

One of the greatest gifts Steve gave to the world is Apple. No company has ever inspired such creativity or set such high standards for itself. Our values originated from Steve and his spirit will forever be the foundation of Apple. We share the great privilege and responsibility of carrying his legacy into the future.

I'm incredibly proud of the work we are doing, delivering products that our customers love and dreaming up new ones that will delight them down the road. It's a wonderful tribute to Steve's memory and everything he stood for.

- Tim
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Take a look at the video below.




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- Posted using my iPhone 5