Apple’s latest operating system has both the press and the company’s loyal fan-base buzzing, including many students around Virginia Tech's campus.
iOS 6 is available for most versions of Apple’s popular iPhone, iPad and iPod touch. According to its website, the new system adds more than 200 features to compatible devices. However, like most Apple releases, it has received both praise and criticism.
Apple’s new maps app has stirred the most debate in the blogosphere and on campus.
“My friends told me that the maps were the biggest change,” said Matt Haines, a sophomore mechanical engineering major. He downloaded the new software but noticed few changes besides maps.
Apple replaced the Google Maps feature with its own developed program. The new app adds several features, like a 3-D view of major cities and turn-by-turn navigation.
Users, however, were critical of the decision to dump Google.
“They have their own map system now, but it doesn’t really work very well,” said Katy Baker, sophomore landscape architecture major.
Freshman music education major Jeb Sturgill agrees.
“I read the reviews for it before it came out and I was really excited to get it, but the navigation was not as cool as they said it would be,” Sturgill said.
Apple’s program does not incorporate public transportation information, as Google’s app did, and includes far less detail. Campus buildings, for instance, are conspicuously absent in Apple’s version.
There have also been complaints of glitches that have sent people on miles-long loops to reach an address across the street and maps that show expanses of empty land where cities should be.
Frustrated users have uploaded screenshots of convoluted routes suggested by Apple’s app to Twitter and Reddit.
Haines liked some of the additional features, but ultimately found the new maps to be subpar compared to Google’s program.
“The map system is pretty cool, although it has also gone a little downhill. It’s less detailed with streets and such,” Haines said.
For those who actually use Apple’s iPhone as a phone, iOS 6 has new features for calls as well. For instance, when a student is in class and gets an incoming call that they send straight to voicemail, they now have the option to set up a reminder to return to the call. Alternatively, users can choose a preset text response to send to the caller.