Blaming changes in iOS 7 that “harm user experience”, Nokia has quietly pulled out its Here Maps from Apple's iOS App Store. The app, which was launched amid much fanfare in November 2012, was removed earlier this month.
The company's official website (http://here.com/download) redirects non-Windows users to here.com to access the maps. However, the site, which works fine on a PC, was broken when accessed from an iPhone at the time of filing this report.
When approached for a comment, a Nokia spokesperson sent The Indian Express an official statement. It read, “We have made the decision to remove our HERE Maps app from the Apple App Store because recent changes to iOS 7 harm the user experience. iPhone users can continue to use the mobile web version of HERE Maps under m.here.com., offering them core location needs, such as search, routing, orientation, transit information and more, all completely free of charge.”
Following the sale of the company's hardware division to Microsoft, Here Maps has become one of three main businesses owned by Nokia. Microsoft bought a 10-year licence for Here Maps, which are pre-installed on Nokia's Windows Phone range.
Before it was pulled from Apple's App Store, Here Maps was a buggy app. We tested the app on three Apple devices and it was unusable on all of them. The design of Here Maps on iOS was reminiscent of Nokia's Symbian operating system, while the Windows Phone variant has a much cleaner, modern look.
When zooming in and out on the iOS version, Here Maps had a critical bug that froze the app. When it did not freeze, it would either zoom in to maximum or do the exact opposite. The app would not settle on medium zoom so that users could look for alternative routes or directions.
As of now, Here Maps apps are available only on Windows Phone and on most Nokia phones.