Apple Ditched Google Maps with Over One Year Left in Their Agreement [Update]
The Verge has the scoop from two anonymous sources about what really went down between Apple and Google over replacing the latter’s maps on iOS 6:
Apple’s decision to ship its own mapping system in the iPhone 5 and iOS 6 was made over a year before the company’s agreement to use Google Maps expired, according to two independent sources familiar with the matter. The decision, made sometime before Apple’s WWDC event in June, sent Google scrambling to develop an iOS Google Maps app — an app which both sources say is still incomplete and currently not scheduled to ship for several months.
According to the report, Apple abruptly decided to end the agreement with Google Maps as it was inferior to the version available on Android OS, as iOS did not have access to turn-by-turn directions. An earlier WSJ report noted Google wanted deeper branding and features within iOS, and did not agree with Apple’s renewal terms. Rumours of Google Maps being replaced were heard as far back as May of last year.
Just yesterday, Google Executive Chairman (and former Apple Board of Director) Eric Schmidt revealed there is no Google Maps for iOS in the making, and also relayed it was not their call when it came to Apple ditching Google Maps.
Apple Maps has come under scrutiny and criticism by iOS users for some of its inaccuracies and lack of transit routes. Apple is reportedly hiring ex-Google employees to work on iOS 6 maps, and also spoke out about Maps, saying it was only going to get better.
Back in June, we compared Google Maps to Apple Maps in iOS 6 and how it looked in Vancouver. How are you liking Apple Maps in iOS 6?
Update: The NYT is reporting Google is working on an iOS map version to be released by the end of the year. The app should come with 3D imagery like Apple Maps, and will take those images from the existing Google Earth app. The report also corroborates the story above, where two similar sources spoke to the The Verge.
Google is developing a maps application for iPhone and iPad that it is seeking to finish by the end of the year, according to people involved with the effort who declined to be named because of the nature of their work.