iPhone OS 2.2 beta 2 - Street View and new mapping features
This is according to a report from MacNN and iPhoneYap who have screenshots of the new mapping beta features for anyone to see.
The new features revolve around walking, transit and location sharing features, although walking directions and location sharing have been available in Nokia Maps 2.0 on its N-Series devices for some time, with Apple only catching up thanks to Google making the features available.
“Public transit” directions lets you choose from public transport options of subways and buses, making this feature very US-centric for now, although bringing hope that Google will roll it out to other countries, many of which also have more numerous train, tram and light rail options.
You can also choose your departure time and set custom schedules, something that will make the feature even more flexible and could end up doing a much better job of getting you where you need to go rather than hunting through the transit websites of public transport authorities.
The screenshots reportedly show three new icons in the “directions” mode – car, public transit and walking.
“Walking mode” is handy because it helps you better find your way to your location once you’ve parked your car or alighted from public transport via footpaths as opposed to main roads, although in cities you’ll sometimes find you’ve lost your GPS lock and will need to refer to the map, the path shown and check the street signs as you walk.
This is something I’ve certainly done when using Google Maps on my iPhone in the CBD, so hopefully these new features will simply make that task even easier.
Accessing the ‘Street View’ feature is done by “dropping a pin” into the map, after which the pin can be clicked and the Street View displayed on-screen in horizontal mode for maximum visual effect.
Naturally these features are all still in beta due to iPhone OS 2.2 not being released yet but it seems a pretty safe bet that they’ll all make it in with Apple set to trumpet them, along with other already reported and as-yet unknown features.
Sadly there’s no sign of the much desired cut and paste features, or even something as tragically simple as notes synchronisation... so we live in hope that Apple wakes up and delivers these in iPhone OS 2.3, 2.4, 2.5 or 3.0, or surprises us with them in OS 2.2.
We also hope we don’t have to wait until iPhone OS 4.0 to get them, or be forced to buy the 2009 iPhone 3.0 instead, however Apple and Steve Jobs-like that would be.
For more details on the new Street View and Google Maps features please check the MacNN report linked above.
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