Apple Maps Reportedly Using Drones To Compete With Google Maps

Apple is planning on sending out airborne drones in the U.S. to improve data for its Maps application, according to a new report from Bloomberg.

Google_vs_AppleIn December of last year, Apple Maps passed Google Maps as the most used mapping program on Apple’s iPhones and iPads. Now, the company wants to make its Maps program even better by using drones to collect and update new mapping information more quickly and by adding interior views of buildings.

Apple applied for an FAA exemption in late 2015 that would allow it to fly drones for commercial purposes, and received approval earlier this year. The company has reportedly been putting together robotics and data collection experts to get the program underway. The drone initiative is said to enable survey of items like street signs, changes to routes and areas of construction.

The report also reveals that Apple is leveraging last year’s acquisition of startup Indoor.io to build indoor mapping views that would allow users to navigate inside buildings such as airports, museums, and shopping malls, likely similar to a feature that Google Maps introduced back in 2011.

Both Apple and Google consider digital maps to be crucial to the success of their mobile operating systems, iOS and Android, because many different types of apps relating to everything from travel to fitness rely on them for location data. Apple first launched its mapping app in 2012, five years after the iPhone launch of Google Maps.

World-traveling, tech-savvy, music-producing writer obsessed with all things Apple, video games, and the finer things in life, e.g. mezcal and tacos. When I'm not writing for IIC I'm exploring new places, eating new foods, and generally trying to be a decent human.

  • Jay

    Apple maps blows… but im forced to use it because carplay doesnt support anything else -_-

  • Victorious Secret

    “In December of last year, Apple Maps passed Google Maps as the most used mapping program on Apple’s iPhones and iPads”

    Really?????? I exclusively use Google Maps, as its way more accurate.

  • FragilityG4

    Apple maps are way more accurate than google maps here in Ontario. I deleted google maps many years ago and I don’t regret it at all. I use Apple maps everyday and they take me to door steps unlike google who use to take me down the street!

  • xxxJDxxx

    Unbelievably Apple maps STILL to this day does not have the street I live on marked accurately on its maps. I’ve submitted this report over and over and over since the launch of Apple maps. If they can’t be bothered to fix their map I certainly won’t be using their service. It’s so bad that at this point its a joke.

  • xxxJDxxx

    I just opened the app again for the first time in a long time. Checked out a few local addresses I happen to know and nearly all of them were wrong. Sorry Apple, not even close to being useful.

  • Hafiz

    Apple maps blows, it has led me to the wrong address on multiple occasions. Google Maps FTW!