“By dropping ‘points’ on a map within the Survey App, you indicate your position within the venue as you walk through,” reads the app description. “As you do so, the indoor Survey App measures the radio frequency (RF) signal data and combines it with an iPhone’s sensor data. The end result is indoor positioning without the need to install special hardware.”
Interesting in the sense it appears to be an app that stores can use to map their interiors with iOS devices. It’s not a crowd sourced indoor mapping application. This dovetails nicely with the other announcement this morning about their new Maps Indoor service.
For now, Apple is focusing its efforts on a handful of venues that meet specific criteria. These requirements include:
The venue must be accessible to the general public
Only locations that draw more than a million visitors per year
Apple requires “complete, accurate, and scaled reference maps” for consideration
The venue must have Wi-Fi throughout, and an official app available on the App Store
The groundwork is set for Apple to start mapping interiors of these large open venues. But with an app and an iPhone, clearly Apple is planning to scale this out to just about every indoor location. I suspect we’ll see stadiums, amusement parks and other entertainment venues appear first over the next year.
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I have to get some things off my chest but first just know that most people in Arizona drive around with a lasso in their truck for just such an occasion.
Most people are very familiar with responsive web design. The concept where a website automatically reformats itself to best fit on the size screen or type of device you have. Awesome stuff right? Rarely do I have to pinch and zoom on a website anymore. Yet I’m still seeing tons of (mostly government) mapping applications fail completely on smartphones and tablets. The mapping libraries are available to handle things, just need to get people to actually use it.
Apple Maps released an update today. Much of it is just better support to find things but they did go the eye candy route. I don’t know about you but I find 3D mapping a huge pain in the rear on mobile devices. Heck I can’t even remember the last time I opened up Google Earth (quick check, nope I don’t have it installed on this MacBook). Sure the idea that Big Ben has the correct time is pretty cool from a technologist perspective but the user in me just wants to have transit mapping and better traffic results. That’s how you get me to use the map on my iPhone.
Looks like Apple is also ready to release more details on their smart watch. I’ve seen some really amazing things with the Android Wear products and one can only think that the Apple Watch will push the envelope more. Personally I like the idea of my watch telling me which way to turn while walking in a city. I suspect we’ll see lots more this summer with mapping and smart watches.
Pitchers and catchers have reported. Spring is here and the boys of summer are working hard. Don’t worry about me though, it’s an odd year and that means the Giants won’t win the World Series. Next year though be ready!