New code dealing with physical address processing was deployed last night. The goal was to do a good job of translating postal addresses as they appear on GMail contacts into the device format. This is an interesting problem because there are many different address formats in use around the world and the address comes to us free-form with no fields identified. The new code is able to recognize addresses from a large number of countries, although it may still be challenged by some UK addresses. If the country is present in the contact's address the iPhone map application should now correctly locate addresses in countries other than the good old USA. The iPhone seems to have bug in its contact edit screen: a contact that has a valid country (for example the phone's map app finds the address correctly) will always display 'United States' for the country if you edit the contact. This doesn't happen for contacts entered on the device itself. We will be adding a 'default country' setting to the web site soon that allows a global override for the country on all contacts that don't already have their country set. Thank you to all the users from France and other countries who helped make this feature happen.
The mysterious 'squares' in contact names problem has also been fixed, along with a few contact issues seen with Windows Mobile devices (file-as not being always set, contacts appearing as 'Unknown').