iPhone 5 (white, three-up, Maps)

When Tim Cook wrote his open letter last September, apologizing for the quality of the new Maps app, he said that Apple would work on it non-stop until it lived up to its incredibly high standards. And it has been.

Though it hasn’t garnered much media attention, Apple has made a number of improvements to its Maps app over the past six months, including adding Flyover support and 3D building images to several new cities…

The Loop’s Jim Dalrymple lists 30 cities from around the world that either just received Flyover support, or gained expanded Flyover coverage in the last few months. He also names the 12 latest cities to get 3D buildings.

But it doesn’t stop there:

“In addition to all of these changes, Apple has updated city labels in cities worldwide and improved satellite imagery in a number of countries. Other updates include location information for Apple Stores, businesses, movie theaters, restaurants, airports and transit stops.”

I’ve noticed that Flyover support has greatly improved in the Portland, OR area over the past few months, and sure enough, it’s listed in Dalrymple’s report. To see if your area has recently received some Maps love, click here.

Apple has also been extremely active on an international level as well. Earlier this week, it pushed out an update to the Maps app in Japan, with better turn-by-turn directions and UI. And it’s recently done the same in China.

Personally, I’ve never experienced any issues with Apple’s Maps. But I know a lot of people who have, so it’s good to see Apple working so hard to improve it. I like the way they’re doing it too: quickly, quietly and effectively.

That’s not to say that it gets off scot-free though. Maps was clearly launched prematurely, and Apple’s been paying for it ever since. In addition to the wealth of public criticism it has endured, it’s also said goodbye to two top executives.

How has Apple Maps been working for you lately? Notice any improvements?