Apple is planning to reintroduce mass transit directions to its Maps app in iOS 9. Citing unnamed sources, 9to5Mac reported that Apple hopes to introduce bus, subway, and train route navigation to Apple Maps, a feature that has been absent since Apple stopped working with Google to power its mapping services.
Plans for the service include larger icons for mass transit facilities (bus stations, train stations, airports, etc.), a Transit view alongside the Standard, Hybrid, and Satellite/Flyover views, and a trip-planning feature. Apple is also reportedly using autonomous robots to map out large buildings, though that feature may or may not be part of iOS 9 Apple Maps.
Apple has been working on mass transit directions for years, an effort that includes corporate acquisitions. According to 9to5Mac's Mark Gurman, the company originally planned to launch the service as part of iOS 8 as early as its 2014 World Wide Developer Conference (WWDC), but pulled it because it wasn't ready for prime time.
In the intervening year, Apple has added more cities and more data while it refined the service. If all goes according to plan, Apple will unveil the service at WWDC 2015 in June.
MacRumors noted that Apple has been advertising for engineers relating to transit services, while the company has at least one employee on LinkedIn whose job title is Transit Routing Engineer.
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