GoogleMaps Stories December 19, 2013

We’re pretty selective in the Apple patent applications we cover here, simply because Apple patents all kinds of things for all kinds of reasons, and for every one of them that makes it into an Apple product, there are hundreds of others that never will. But this is one we think might.

The core concept is nothing new: layered maps. The existing Apple Maps app already allows us to choose between standard mapping, satellite view or both, and Google Maps on the web allows us to switch on or off layers like traffic, weather, public transit lines and so on. But what the Apple patent application describes would, if you’ll excuse the pun, take this idea to a whole new level …  expand full story

GoogleMaps Stories December 12, 2013

Google Maps iOS app gets some Google Now functionality, showing reservation info

The latest version of the Google Maps iOS app has been given some Google Now functionality: when you click on an airport, hotel or restaurant, the app will display any reservation information it can find in your linked gmail account. This functionality was previously only available in the desktop app.

Although Google has added a succession of features to the app, data last month showed that most iPhone users were using the pre-installed Apple Maps. Adding Google Now functionality is an attractive feature for gmail users, but Google faces the same problem as ever since Apple replaced Google Maps with its own offering: most iPhone users will use what Apple gives them.

Google Maps is a free download from iTunes.

GoogleMaps Stories July 12, 2013

The sometimes stormy relationship between Apple and Google appears to be growing friendlier, with Google Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt telling Reuters at the annual Allen & Co conference in Sun Valley that the two companies were having “lots and lots” of meetings.

Schmidt did not provide details about the nature of the meetings during comments to reporters at the annual Allen and Co media conference in Sun Valley, Idaho on Thursday. He noted that Google Chief Business Officer Nikesh Arora, who joined him at the press briefing, was leading many of the discussions.

The two companies are in “constant business discussions on a long list of issues,” Schmidt said.

The two companies started out close. Schmidt joined Apple’s board in 2006, and the iPhone launched with both Googlemaps and YouTube on board. That was to change after Google’s Android platform began growing in popularity. It was revealed in Walter Isaacson’s Steve Jobs biography that Jobs threatened “thermonuclear war” on Google over what he felt was a copycat product …  expand full story

GoogleMaps Stories November 15, 2012

The previous version of Maps included on iOS 5.0.

After Apple moved to its own mapping solution on iOS, the rumors of Google bringing a standalone Maps app to the platform have intensified. The Wall Street Journal reported that the highly anticipated Google Maps for iOS may be here soon, with word that the app has entered its final testing stages and will include turn-by-turn navigation.

The WSJ wasn’t able to give specific time frame for the app’s launch, but the report added that the app has been distributed to a few members outside the bounds of Mountain View for testing before it is submitted to the iTunes App Store review team. The launch sounds like sooner than later, as several publications in the recent months have pegged the launch before the end of the year. The question is: will Apple accept it?

Google won’t be alone in the iOS Maps-alternative battleground, however. Nokia announced yesterday it plans to release its own iOS map solution under the “Here” brand. Nokia said it plans to make the app available on the iTunes App Store in the coming weeks, offering offline maps, voice-guided navigation, and information on public transport.

More on Eddy Cue’s Apple Maps involvement below

GoogleMaps Stories November 8, 2012

Walmart unveils two Apple deals in 2012 Black Friday sales ad

Walmart just released its annual Black Friday sales flyer for both in-store and online shopping with two Apple deals unwrapped.

The only in-store Apple deal is a second-generation iPad 16GB Wi-Fi model for $399. The tablet obviously does not come with a discounted price tag, but customers will receive a $75 bonus Walmart gift card with purchase.

The only online Apple deal is a fourth-generation iPod touch and bonus accessory kit in 16GB and 32GB capacities for $179 and $249, respectively. So, folks are only saving $20 if they purchase the 16GB flavor and zilch for the 32GB. Well, I guess the free accessory kit saves money too. Meh.

And…that’s it. Check it out:

More information on Walmart’s sales and event hours is available in the press release below. Oh, online shipping fees depend on customers’ selected options (more details here).

GoogleMaps Stories November 6, 2012

A Google Zombie iPhone?

With Android now on 75 percent of all smartphones sold, and Apple and Samsung battling in and out of court for the top vendor position, the smartphone wars usually come down to units sold. Apple vs. Samsung. Android vs. iOS. Less of a focus has been Google’s steady invasion of iOS, providing users with an alternative universe to most of the core features of Apple’s mobile operating system. The importance of Google’s ecosystem of iOS apps has never been more apparent than following the recent controversy over the removal of YouTube and Google Maps as default features of iOS. Apple realized the necessity of controlling key experiences on iOS, such as Maps, but it is running into a backlash from users in the process. It is not just facing competition from Android vendors; it is also now engaged in a struggle to keep Google from creating its own layer on top of iOS.

Google’s iOS apps are not just driving iPhone and iPad users to use Google services instead of Apple’s; they are increasingly an important aspect of the iOS experience for a large amount of users. Sixty-one percent of iOS users in our own polls said they were hesitant to even update to iOS 6 because of Apple’s new Maps app, many of which are still waiting for a standalone Google Maps app that Apple has yet to approve. Some say the Maps fiasco coupled with Siri might have even led to the departure of long-time iOS chief Scott Forstall, which many think could result in a new direction for iOS. What this means for Google’s presence on iOS going forward remains to be seen, but Apple does not appear to be ignoring the control Google’s apps have over its users.

expand full story

Powered by WordPress.com VIP