/ OS Maps app not working

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ogreville 02 Nov 2019

Anyone have any insight of insider info on when Ordnance Survey will correct the issue with their OS Maps App, following the updates a few months ago? - no access to maps without 4G, even when purchased and downloaded to the app. 

I spoke with OS and they were less than helpful. I was told, in so many words, that it doesn't matter that their product (which I paid good money for) doesn't work and won't work for the foreseeable future, because I "shouldn't be relying on electronic maps for navigation anyway" and should be using the paper map (which I primarily do). Needless to say, I was unimpressed by this answer and gave the poor woman I spoke to a right rollocking (sorry about that).

Any insight from anyone would be handy.

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jezb1 02 Nov 2019
In reply to ogreville:

No help, but on iPhone my app is working. 

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captain paranoia 02 Nov 2019
In reply to ogreville:

The OS have displayed very considerable incompetence with their app development, I'm afraid.

The fact that there have been so many significant problems points to a major failure in their testing regime, leading me with the feeling that it's a hack job by some interns, rather than a professional software development team.

Functionally, it's a bit shit, too, compared with the available free or cheap alternatives (e.g. OruxMaps, written by one guy in his spare time).

It's a very poor effort by our national mapping agency.

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annieman 02 Nov 2019
In reply to ogreville:

My OS maps were very unstable since the update. I've found that logging out and logging back in again has restored some stability. Good Luck.

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DancingOnRock 02 Nov 2019
In reply to annieman:

That’s just fixed my not being able to see off-line maps. Thanks. 

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BusyLizzie 02 Nov 2019
In reply to ogreville:

I'm baffled by the OS maps app. It is requiring a log in or registration, which it didn't previously I think? Doesn't recognise me, so I've tried to register but each time it swallows my details  and then says oops we're busy please try later.

What am I doing wrong?

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In reply to ogreville:

Not much help but I can agree that the OS are a bizarre organisation to deal with.

We pay for use of the OS layer in some of our maps. The billing system requires us to send them our data of what we use, they then send me a paper invoice in an envelope, which I pay thankfully by direct transfer although I wouldn’t be surprised if they were happier with a cheque.

Alan

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DancingOnRock 02 Nov 2019
In reply to BusyLizzie:

Do a forgot password. I had odd behaviour when it seemed to have forgotten me. 

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wilkie14c 02 Nov 2019
In reply to ogreville:

I’ve recently had to delete the app altogether and reinstall it. then go to os/redeem and enter the code from my paper maps again, then the app let me download the maps again.

Iphone ios 13 BTW

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rj_townsend 03 Nov 2019
In reply to ogreville:

My iOS version has been spectacularly bad since the “upgrade”. There’s an option for “show offline areas of maps” - turn this on to see if it helps. Some of my offline maps reappeared when this was activated.

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DancingOnRock 03 Nov 2019
In reply to rj_townsend:

Yes. All apps seem to be really struggling. Editing posts here is woeful. 

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axor 03 Nov 2019
In reply to ogreville:

I'm really disappointed too with the os maps app. It worked ok before the update. I intentionally just bought the paper maps for the areas I go walking as I have a waterproof phone so I could just have a quick look before at my phone, even if there is no 4g (which there often isn't in the hills).

Now I have had to buy a map case and install grid ref apps on my watch/phone in case I lose where I am on the map.

It was so convenient before to have an os maps app that worked offline. They are taking a massive step back.

On the plus side I seem to have access to all the os maps, even the ones I haven't bought, no idea why but it's not much good if it only works on 4g.

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Babika 03 Nov 2019
In reply to ogreville:

Thanks for this thread- I thought it was just me or my ancient phone (3 year old Samsung Galaxy).

I'm always using myl downloaded maps when out locally. Its really helpful to check i'm still on the footpath in the middle of a crop field when all the signs disappear and the farmer's planted over the RoW.   

The mb signal round here is crap - scarcely 3G - so that probably explains what's happened. The maps were fine until recently though. 

Sigh

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PCowling 05 Nov 2019
In reply to Babika:

I've never updated to the new app and have kept the old OS mapfinder on my phone. Much more stable. Better zoom and no log in issues or data use issues. 

Never understood why they shelved it. 

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Graeme Hammond 05 Nov 2019
In reply to ogreville:

The maps used to just stick to one scale so when you zoomed out and panned a bit it was faster and easier to track where you where on the screen, now when you zoom out it has to load the next scale up and it is harder to track then has to reload the first map when you zoom in ultra annoying.

Also zooms stupidly far in when you try to start plotting a route.

Frustrating what was a reasonably good app before has gone backwards

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TobyA 06 Nov 2019
In reply to PCowling:

I used to use OS mapfinder as well and had bought quite a few tiles of mapping at 1.50000 and found it was very stable. Perfect for what I needed. Then I bought a new phone and when I put the app on there it wouldn't reload the majority of the map tiles I had bought. Amazon who I had bought them through said it's OS's problem and they said they weren't supporting it anymore so there wasn't anything they could do but they would credit me for  those areas of map offline on the new OS app. I had the OS app as well as I have the subscription to OS, but it was always buggy and has got a load worse since the update! I also don't know why they stopped supporting Mapfinder because for actual use, it was totally reliable.

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deepsoup 06 Nov 2019
In reply to Graeme Hammond:

I'm a little bit torn on that one.  The app works fine on my phone, and I did used to find it a bit of a pain having to manually select the 50k or 25k 'layer' while zooming in & out - now it's a bit of a pain when it happens automatically at not quite the right time.  Ho hum.

Something that does strike me as weird (as a subscriber) is that the app and website are actually showing me slightly different versions of the map, and even slightly different aerial photos.

I've noticed because there's a relatively new bridleway (a proper PROW) that appeared on the online OS map quite recently.  On the edge of the Peak District near Sheff, it goes from Broomhead Reservoir uphill through the woods towards Old Booth Farm - it's still there on the website, but since one of the recent updates has disappeared again from the app on both the 50k and 25k maps.

On the aerial photos I have no idea how extensive the difference is but if you have a look at South Stack lighthouse at Gogarth for example, the OS app and website are clearly showing different photos taken at a different times of the day.  Odd.

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Jon Read 06 Nov 2019
In reply to BusyLizzie:

It looks like you have to register to redeem paper maps. I was getting the same "try later" message as you, but uninstalled & reinstalled and now seem to be registered. Have to download all my previous maps though. Let's hope it works.

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rj_townsend 06 Nov 2019
In reply to ogreville:

They’ve just released an updated version for iOS which claims to have sorted out the bugs. Will be testing this evening...

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Jon Read 09 Nov 2019
In reply to Jon Read:

Ok now I am really annoyed at this update. It's wiped my offline maps, and when I try to get them again (using the same code) it says they've already been redeemed! Am I missing something?

Edit: Fixed my own problem. Had to log out and log back in and then it knew about my offline maps (which I had to download again). It seems to be a common theme that app developers give little thought to existing users.... (see BBC Sounds debacle).

Post edited at 13:19
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johnzxcv 13:43 Sun
In reply to Jon Read:

I'm also very annoyed by this incompetent upgrade and had to reload all previously redeemed paper maps. I'm current paying for Premium subscription but I doubt that will be for much longer. I found out the app was not useable when I pulled my phone out whilst in Snowdonia but in a benign situation. Good job I wasn't on the Cairngorm plateau in a January blizzard, without signal and needing some help from a back-up system. I primarily use map and compass and this upgrade has reinforced my belief that this remains the best way. This app failure shows that it is not even good enough to use as a back-up. Back-ups need to be reliable otherwise they are useless. (still fuming.....)

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deepsoup 13:57 Sun
In reply to johnzxcv:

> Good job I wasn't on the Cairngorm plateau in a January blizzard, without signal and needing some help from a back-up system.

Sure is.  But that would have been your fault as much as anyone's for updating an app you depend on for something important and then not bothering to check and see that it still works afterwards.

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johnzxcv 15:58 Sun
In reply to deepsoup:

If I had knowingly updated it what you say would be correct. However I didn't (knowingly). The first inkling was when it asked me to login and once I had done that I found none the map data that was previously on my phone was there or was inaccessible.

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deepsoup 19:02 Sun
In reply to johnzxcv:

There's a lesson there for us all probably - if your phone can't be trusted not to mess about with the apps without at least warning you first, you're taking a little extra risk relying on it as a means of navigation.  (Back-up or otherwise.) 

If you ditch the OS app and replace it with Viewranger or whatever instead, it would arguably be foolish to assume the same couldn't also happen to that in the future.

I have a nice simple little Android app that just shows the Open Cycle Map when it has a signal.  (That map is particularly good for the Peak District - often indicates paths that don't appear on the OS map.)  It was officially discontinued well over a year ago, but it's quite handy sometimes so I've been declining to give Google permission to 'update' it out of existence ever since.  It'll keep working until I either get a new phone or accidentally hit "update all" one day.

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johnzxcv 22:17 Sun
In reply to deepsoup:

Thanks for the considered reply deepsoup. A confession. I've just found an old email from OS that I missed, so I was warned. However the point about checking stuff before you leave remains valid. BTW I don't/didn't use OS yet as a back-up on the hill but was just making the point what might have been the case. My old 'brick' type GPS will still be carried.

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