Apple is no stranger to beefing up its mapping efforts through company purchases. We’ve counted at least three big map company purchases including Placebase, C3 and Poly9 that have helped Apple in its growing mapping and location services effort. As we know Apple is still a long way from mapping nirvana and as any Apple PR person will read from a boilerplate to you, “Apple buys smaller technology companies from time to time, and we generally do not discuss our purpose or plans.”

Today it is being reported that Apple closed a deal on Locationary, a service which helps manage databases of location and importantly merge duplicate information and remove outdated entries.

It uses crowdsourcing and a federated data exchange platform called Saturn to collect, merge and continuously verify a massive database of information on local businesses around the world, solving one of location’s biggest problems: out-of-date information.

Not only does Locationary ensure that business listing data is positionally accurate (IE: the restaurant I searched for is where Apple said it would be), it ensures that it is temporally accurate as well (IE: the restaurant I searched for is still open for business and not closed for renovation or shuttered entirely).

In September of last year Locationary CEO Grant Ritchie spoke about what things Apple needed to do to improve its Mapping services obviously including things his company excelled at. Apple apparently liked his advice. A video interview with Ritchie follows:

Locationary announced it had hit 150 million customer profiles under management in December of 2012.

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