Evidence in iOS 5 that Apple is building its own mapping solution

“Despite statements by Google’s former CEO that Apple had ‘just’ renewed their Map partnership with Google, there appears to be evidence that Apple has been working on its own mapping solution in iOS 5,” Arnold Kim reports for MacRumors.

“It’s certainly no secret that Apple is actively working on some sort of mapping solution. In the past few years, Apple has acquired two mapping companies Placebase and Poly9,” Kim reports. “The company has also been actively recruiting for job applicants with navigation software experience and has even revealed work on a future crowds-sourced traffic database.”

Kim reports, “Now, a look at the legal disclaimers found in iOS 5 reveal a new section called ‘Map Data.’ This section lists licenses from an extensive number of third party companies that provide mapping data and related services.”

Much more in the full article here.

18 Comments

  1. I hope Apple comes out with its own mapping solution that’s more intuitive to use than Google’s. At times using Google maps on my iPhone & iPad is an exercise in frustration. I like Apple’s simplicity. Google has a tendency to make things that are a disaster in UI terms. Elegance is a byword for Apple. Shiteous is what describes Google best.

  2. Mapping is one of the many areas that Apple is putting years of research and development into. I don’t think they are going to release anything soon just to replace Google Maps on iOS devices. More likely, Apple will wait to release any mapping software until the R&D teams come up with truly innovative mapping technology that is fundamentally better than what competitors can immediately offer.

    1. Quite honestly if the underlying data supplied by Google is lacking in the presentation layer I don’t think Apple will be able to do very much to improve upon it. If Apple develops its own mapping technology, it will be able to integrate it better into Apple designed map apps which should not result in the sometimes abortion of a navigation app that depends on data supplied by Google.

  3. Mapping has always been a hole in Apples software lineup. There was never anything as good as MS Streets and Trips on the Mac (boy, I hated typing that). When Apple switched to the Intel processor I was hoping there would be an emulation mode that let Streets & Trips run under OS X. Not to be. Hope springs eternal.

    Web based solutions are only useful when you can connect. Freestanding mapping software can be a real boon. If Apple does plug the gap, it will be better than anyone.

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