What makes Google’s maps so great? It’s the human touch


Skift Take

In addition to lots of humans getting dirty with the data, Google’s mapping products have the advantage of over a decade of intensive use, correction, and improvements.

— Jason Clampet

There’s a simple answer: people.

For all of Google’s reputation as a data-data-data company, the company’s famed mapping product, which arrived on iOS early this morning, is good for a different reason: people. In reporting earlier this year about how Google builds its maps, I stumbled upon a massive operation requiring vast amounts of human labor. Basically, the company can acquire all kinds of data — from governments, cars driving the streets, satellite imagery, private data stores — but humans must compile all these things. We are the ones who understand the logic of the streets and can embed it into the locations on the map.

Tags: android, google, ios, maps

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