There are only two mapping companies that could possibly make sense for Apple to buy

“We’ve seen a great deal of speculation in the past week about Apple buying a company to help it solve its nagging mapping headache. The big rumor, both started and squashed by TechCrunch, was Waze, the crowdsourced mapping and traffic app,” John Koetsier reports for VentureBeat. “The only problem with that theory? Waze would only slow Apple down.”

“At least, according to Skobbler’s Marcus Thielking. He’s the cofounder of Skobbler, a spinoff from Navigon that sells one of the top mapping solutions in the world: GPS Navigation 2 (US$0.99 for iPhone and iPad). It’s got a No. 1 sales ranking in app stores in 20 countries and has sold more than three million copies. It’s also based on OpenStreetMap, the crowdsourced ‘Wikipedia of maps,'” Koetsier reports. “‘There are only two companies that could possibly make sense for Apple to buy,’ Thielking said this morning from Europe. ‘There’s Garmin, which doesn’t use TomTom, on which Apple Maps is built, and there’s TomTom itself. TomTom would be my bet.'”

Read more in the full article here.

34 Comments

  1. None, actually. Apple already has lots of staff to deal with maps; they would do it perfectly if maps debuted half year later.

    Now they will just work out most issues by this late spring and that is it.

    1. They definitely need to get more local information from somewhere, especially about businesses.

      They could also use a bold move to restore the trust that was unceremoniously kicked. TomTom would give them that and bring a lot more features that Google doesn’t have.

    2. There is the possibility that it is not too late for Apple to label the Apple Maps app as Beta. the advantage is that at some point when it really is ready for prime time, they would have a second chance to regain customers by removing the beta tag and announcing to the blogosphere that people should take a second look at Apple maps. otherwise most people will just keep disowning the app

      1. Why is Google so often completely wrong? I mean, how can their satellite mapping be a decade out of date? How come there are local businesses to me that are incorrectly shown?
        Answer, please.
        Google have had far, far longer to get it right, and they’re not perfect.
        Apple already have TomTom, they need local business data, etc, to improve their mapping, the road details will ALWAYS be changing.
        Unless you live in the middle of Idaho…
        Or Nebraska.

  2. I found on Apple Maps today a bunch of missing data from San Elijo Hills, CA. There is a lot of construction going on there but a lot of it has been there a while and there’s still nothing on Apple, paid Garmin app Navigon or Bing Maps. Google Maps has it mapped though. I sent in a report on it to Apple and hopefully it gets corrected. The Garmin app doesn’t even have San Elijo Hills listed at all!

        1. Apple has said that about some of their products in the past but not specifically about Maps that I know of. Regardless, Garmin and any company make products that should work too but only Apple is held to the highest standard.

  3. My guess is the problem is poor integration / access to a comprehensive web dataset. Users have become accustomed to the level of accuracy, relevance, and completeness provided by Google Maps and I would think it is leveraging Google’s web info. Compare that approach to a more deliberately developed dataset from one of the navigation system manufacturers. If Apple could deal with the unstructured data and had access to it we might finally have a revolutionary mapping app. Why can I still not see hours of operation, residents, inventories, demographics, etc. in a map? I shouldn’t have to rely on a specially-created mashup. I wish Apple would just buy Yahoo! and get on with changing the world.

  4. To atom needs to kick their satellites into high gear and get some updated imagery. I was just looking (via Maps) at my neighborhood the other day. The map showed a building that has been torn down and gone for well over a year. Not good.

  5. Leave it to TechCrunch, the evil spawn of assclown egomaniac Michael Arrington to create yet another fustercluck that helped drive down Apple’s stock valuation. Why let anything like fact checking stand in the way of a juicy and wildly inaccurate rumor?

    Frickin’ bloggers.

  6. Google and all the google apologists (go see ZDnet) believe that Apple is ‘Evil’ to protect it’s intellectual property, that info should be ‘free’.

    so why doesn’t Apple just copy Google’s map data and be done with it?

    Pundits all over praise google for stolen android, yet crucify apple for ‘bad’ maps because Apple wanted to do the right thing, build it’s own data and not steal. In the modern age do the ‘right thing’ and be shat on, do evil and like Schmidt get an offer of a government cabinet post…

    1. Instead of stealing data, why doesn’t Apple use the data that’s being handed to them for free by its users?

      Three businesses in a major US city that I know about have had incorrect addresses in Apple’s maps since day 1. I’ve clicked on the “Report a Problem” button in the Maps app, given Apple the corrected information, which can be verified on their company websites (and on Google maps), and even repeated the processes every couple of weeks for good measure. But it’s been over 3 months and they still have not corrected a single address!

      Seriously, if Apple isn’t even going to try have accurate maps then they should just give up their half-ass attempt and leave mapping to the professionals.

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