Apple hiring software engineers to help bring transit data to Maps

iOS 6 (Maps, turn-by-turn teaser)

When Apple replaced Google Maps in iOS 6 with its own software last year, one of the biggest user complaints was that the new app didn’t have public transit data. For folks who take the bus or train to work everyday, it was a big deal.

The good news, though, is that the company does appear to be working on adding the feature. In addition to acquiring transit experts like HopStop and Embark, Apple has been hiring software engineers for its ‘Transit Routing’ team.

MacRumors points to two new job listings on Apple’s website this afternoon, both of which call for software engineers to join the company’s Maps team to work on building and improving a Transit Routing platform “at a massive scale.”

Here’s the description from one of the listings:

“As a member of the Transit Routing team, you will work on one of the most anticipated features of Apple Maps. You will design and implement functionality that will be used by millions of users worldwide. Being part of a small team, you will have an influence on the future product.

You will be responsible for implementing new features and resolving complex issues. You will work on high performance server code using C++ in Linux environment. Work with engineers and QA to deliver high quality routes to our customers. Challenge the status quo and improve design of existing software. Participate in design and code reviews.”

This is the latest bit of evidence we’ve seen that Apple is working to improve its Maps offering. The firm suffered quite a bit of criticism after its release last year due to several user complaints, which led to Tim Cook issuing a letter of apology.

And to their credit, Maps has gotten a lot better in the past year. A lot of the initial bugs have been fixed via iterative updates, and 3D Flyover support has been expanded in a number of major cities around the globe including Paris, France.

Additionally, Apple released a desktop version of its Maps app alongside OS X Mavericks earlier this month, and has been seen hiring Web UI designers to help design, develop, and maintain complex front-end code for a new ‘secret project.’