What’s it like to have your startup bought by Apple? Stressful.

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What’s it like to have your startup bought by Apple? Stressful
Everyone thinks of the money. But there's a lot of work to get there.
Photo illustration: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

What’s it like when Apple buys your startup? According to David Hodge, founder of mapping app Embark, the answer is: stressful.

Apple bought Embark back in 2013 as part of its efforts to grow its mapping services. Embark focused on building free transit apps to help people navigate public transportation. In a new series of tweets, Hodge reveals the behind-the-scenes story of the Apple acquisition.

Apple debuts upgraded maps in New York City

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Apple Maps just got a New York update.
Didn't Apple tell us it loves New York?
Photo: Apple

Apple Maps users in the Big Apple just got a sizable update to their service. As part of Apple’s quest to challenge Google’s mapping services, Apple Maps now offers far more local detail in New York City. That includes extra details about buildings, roads and footpaths, parks, and more.

Thanks to iOS 13, users can also take advantage of the 360-degree, Google Street View-style “Look Around” feature.

How to get around with Apple Maps’ Look Around in iOS 13

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Look around on iPad
Look Around is like GTA, only you can't steal cars or murder people.
Photo: Charlie Sorrel/Cult of Mac

Look Around is Apple’s answer to Google’s Street View, and it’s about a zillion times better — if your area has coverage, that is. Look Around is just getting started, and covers very few places. Street View, on the other hand, is available for pretty much anywhere, including underwater, up mountains and on hiking trails.

Why is Look Around better? Well, it’s faster, for one. And it just looks nicer. The images are super-high-resolution and full-screen. Using it on a 13-inch iPad Pro feels like taking a virtual street tour of a neighborhood.

Today in Apple history: iPhone 5 brings big changes, new EarPods

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The iPhone 5 packed remarkable upgrades into an incredibly thin design.
The iPhone 5 proves thin is in at Apple.
Photo: Soldier Knows Best/YouTube

September 12: Today in Apple history: iPhone 5 brings big changes, new EarPods September 12, 2012: Apple introduces the iPhone 5, with a super-slim form factor that makes it the thinnest smartphone in the world.

The new iPhone also brings impressive upgrades such as a greatly improved display and the Lightning port. Despite some controversy, it proves a massive hit.

Insider iPhone 11 leaks, plus the pros and cons of Apple Card! This week, on The CultCast

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CultCast 401
Some big changes may be coming to iPhone...
Photo: Apple

This week on The CultCast: A Foxconn insider spills big iPhone 11 secrets. Plus: the pros and cons of Apple Card, and Apple’s new maps start rolling out across the country. And finally, a strange twist in the MoviePass story unveils the unbelievable shenanigans the company pulled to stayed in business — and they are far worse than we ever imagined!

Our thanks to Squarespace for supporting this episode. Easily create a beautiful website all by yourself, at Squarespace.com/cultcast. Use offer code CultCast at checkout to get 10% off your first purchase of a website or domain..

Updated Apple Maps rolls out to Northeast U.S.

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Apple Maps shortcut
Apple wants to banish those terrible early memories of Apple Maps.
Photo: Charlie Sorrel/Cult of Mac

Apple is rolling out its revamped Apple Maps app in the Northeast, covering Washington, D.C., Maryland, Pennsylvania, New York, Massachusetts and Maine.

The refreshed Apple Maps continues to expand across the United States. Last week, it debuted in Texas, Louisiana and the southern half of Mississippi.

Apple wants to put AR navigation in your car

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Apple Maps could make driving easier with augmented reality navigation tips.
Apple Maps could make driving easier with augmented reality navigation tips.
Photo: Apple

Apple is exploring ways to build augmented reality into Apple Maps. Rather than top-down views of roads and intersections, the company is considering overlaying route information onto live views of the road ahead of the car.

Apple Maps has always lagged behind Google Maps. Building in AR could help it jump ahead.

Apple shows Google how to do Street View with style

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Head to head
Apple's new Look Around feature will launch with iOS 13.
Photo: Reüel van der Steege

Apple’s a few years behind Google with its Street View-style feature called Look Around, announced at WWDC 2019. It may have been worth waiting for, however — at least, based on a new side-by-side comparison.

Assembled by Reüel van der Steege, the demo showcases the impressively smooth Look Around, next to Google’s jerkier alternative. Both parts of the side-by-side demo depict the same road in Hawaii.

‘Culture of fear’ dominates Apple’s secretive satellite office

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apple park
Working for Apple isn't always a dream come true.
Photo: Apple

People that worked for Apple through a staffing agency have revealed some grim details of what it’s like to work for Apple as a contracted employee.

Working on Apple’s mapping projects just a few miles from Apple Park sounds like a dream opportunity, but it turns out the Silicon Valley-based gig isn’t nearly as glamorous as you’d think. A new report about Apple’s temporary workers reveals the “culture of fear” contracted employees face.