Earlier this year I got an IPhone. Yeah, yeah, I don’t care, I got a great deal, and since I design software, and Apple software is one of the gold standards of User Experience work, I figured I should get familiar with what they do and how).
The first seven months? Pretty dang good. The killer apps for me? ”You Need A Budget”, a budget-and-cash-flow app that lets me track spending as I go and fits it into a coherent household budget. I figure it’s paid for the cost of the app and the IPhone several times over.
And Google Maps, especially the “Show Traffic” feature, which allows you to see the Googlemap traffic reports for roads…pretty much anywhere. And I do mean anywhere. During the State Fair, it showed the traffic not only on I94, and not only on Snelling, but on Hamline and Como and University and Larpenteur! It wasn’t perfectly real-time, but it was more than good enough to tell you where the major jams and viable alternates were.
Last week, my phone updated itself to IOS6 – the latest version of the phone’s operating system. And with it, the IOS5 GoogleMaps app was replaced by Apple Maps.
And they are terrible.
Not only do they only cover traffic on major freeways, but they cover it very badly, even after the minute or two it seems to take to load the results at all. And for all the three decades of experience Apple’s UX shop has with designing usable user interfaces, you’d think they could have come up with a way to show the results where people who don’t have eyes like hawks (anymore) could actually easily tell the difference between red (jam!) and tan (no results yet).
And unlike most technowhining, I may actually take them up on it.