Tag Archives: Google Maps

Google Maps off base in the Valley … Bing Maps right on

As I was planning my trip in the valley this week, I was printing of Google Maps to take me from my hotel to meetings and to the SES San Jose. I am staying at the Sheraton San Jose in Milpitas. The exact address is 1801 Barber Lane, Milpitas, CA, 95035, USA. When I was printing my iternary on Friday I did not really notice the placement of the icon on the map for the location of the hotel. Driving from the SFO on Sunday night to the hotel, I noticed the mistake.

Here is the screenshot from Google Maps for this exact query “1801 Barber Ln, Milpitas, CA, 95035, USA” notice where Google plots the location, the yellow circle is where the location actually is. Click the images below to load the maps.

Google Maps Error - 1801 Barber Ln, Milpitas, CA, 95035

I tried the same map search using Bing Maps, they hit the location:

Bing Maps Correct - 1801 Barber Lane, Milpitas, CA

I am sure that Google will be correcting the geo-code for this location once they see the image listed above. All in all, the inconvenience was not that bad, took me a few extra minutes, a few scratches on the forehead and my iPhone to get to the right location on Sunday night.

Morale of the story : double-check your printed maps before leaving and verify using Satellite view (I would have noticed the mistake if I looked at Satellite view) – sometimes they may be a little off.

Local Search in Canada Using the Apple iPhone – a Visual Comparision

As the iPhone becomes more and more popular in Canada I decided to take a look at 4 local web products, YellowPages.ca, 411.ca, Canpages.ca, and Google Maps.

I selected these as they all have iPhone compatible versions of their websites. Google Maps is a standard icon on the iPhone by default.

For this particular test I decided to focus on a popular generic category search (dentists in Toronto) and a very specific landmark search (restaurants by Eau Claire Market). For those of you who don’t know, Eau Claire Market is a popular destination located in downtown Calgary. I believe that landmarks would be important search criteria for mobile products.

In terms of ranking, I have decided not to rank the results. For the landmark search I indicated success or failure. You be the judge in terms of your personal preference. Please feel free to add a comment on your favorite or suggest other sites in Canada that have iPhone versions.

Let’s start with what happens when you bookmark the websites above and put them on your iPhone desktop.

Local Search Icons on iPhone Canada

From left to right:

Maps (Google) – this is default on your iPhone. One issue that I have is that Apple or Google have failed to customize this icon for regions – notice the US highway signage.

YellowPages.ca – In Canada, Yellow Pages(TM) is a registered trademark and when you bookmark you get the logo on your desktop.

411.ca– They have a unique icon and tell you 411 at the beginning of the text string. The ouch! at the end is a little weird though.

Canpages.ca – No custom icon, uses a screenshot that clearly tells the user nothing.

Let’s look at each property individually based on my two search queries.

First we try Google Maps – “dentists in Toronto” search on Map view.

iphone_google_dentists_toronto.jpg

The same search done via list view.

Google Maps Toronto Dentists

Here is the screenshot of the details of the business listing.

iphone_google_dentists_details.jpg

Finally we will conduct “restaurants by Eau Claire Market”. This search failed as the results are located in Toronto. Google did not recognize this landmark.

iphone_google_dentists_restaurants.jpg

Second we try YellowPages.ca here is the screenshot for the “dentists in Toronto” search. NOTICE: with YellowPages.ca you also have the ability to switch to find a person in Canada using Canada411.ca.

YellowPages Canada Toronto Dentists

Here are the results of this search.

iphone_yellowpages_dentists_results.jpg

Here is the details of a business listing

iphone_yellowpages_dentists_details.jpg

Finally we will conduct “restaurants by Eau Claire Market“. This search was a success, landmark was recognized.

iphone_yellowpages_restaurants_eau_claire.jpg

Third we try 411.ca here is the screenshot for the “dentists in Toronto” search.

iphone_411_dentists_search.jpg

Here are the results of this search.

iphone_411_dentists_results.jpg

Here is the details of a business listing

iphone_411_dentists_details.jpg

Finally we will conduct “restaurants by Eau Claire Market”. This search failed as the results are located in Ontario. 411.ca did not recognize this landmark.

iphone_411_restaurants_eau_claire.jpg

Fourth we try CanPages.ca here is the screenshot for the “dentists in Toronto” search.

iphone_canpages_dentists_search.jpg

Here are the results of this search.

iphone_canpages_dentists_results.jpg

Here is the details of a business listing

iphone_canpages_dentists_details.jpg

Finally we will conduct “restaurants by Eau Claire Market”. This search failed CanPages.ca did not recognize this landmark.

iphone_canpages_restaurants_eau_claire.jpg

If you want to see another comparison - check out Taking a Look at Local Merchant Pages in Canada - a post from last December.