With the increased effort to improve its Maps around the world, Apple has having recently posted open positions for Maps Ground Truth managers in seven countries. The company had been hiring for these positions only in Australia previously. According to the recent job posting, the managers are expected to be able to do things like provide feedback for their area to enhance maps, as well as be responsible for other duties listed:
• Testing new releases of map code and data around the U.S.
• Collecting ground truth data to allow for analysis of the impact of potential map code or data changes relative to known truth
• Utilizing local expertise to provide feedback about U.S.-specific mapping details
• Evaluating competing products in-region relative to our maps
As for the “ground truth data”- it refers to collecting mapping data locally rather than by satellite imagery or other remote means. It was reported that Apple asked its employees to help with Map improvements back in October. However, this points to the concrete teams of people specially formed for mapping improvements.
Since the launch of iOS 6 in September 2012, Apple has been steadily improving Maps. The improvements are being made to 3D buildings, Flyover and turn-by-turn navigation around the world. With still a long way to go, Apple is working hard to make Maps the product meet up users’ expectations!