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Google's Mayer skips question of Apple dropping Google Maps

updated 10:55 pm EDT, Mon May 30, 2011

Google won't touch question of Apple map swap

Google's Location VP Marissa Mayer in an interview at the recently wrapped up TechCrunch Disrupt event skirted the question of Apple possibly dropping Google Maps. When asked what Google will do if iOS suddenly stops using its engine in favor of an in-house solution, Mayer sand she was "not going to speculate" as to future plans. She steered the question towards the importance of mobile as a whole and noted that mobile was due to overtake the desktop in the near future.

She did take the opportunity to tout edges Google Maps on Android had over the iOS version, including vector-based maps. Apple's version has to use bandwidth-intensive tiles, but the vectors fit information into a hundredth of the space and enable much more aggressive caching with offline mapping. Google was also planning to use its Wi-Fi hotspot database to improve location finding when a city's geography blocks cellular or GPS satellite data.

Apple has signalled disdain for having to rely on Android's designer for its map data and has been showing small signs of trying to move away, such as buying Placebase for map layers and web-based map developer Poly9. It would still need a map database and possibly other technology, however, and signs have surfaced that the company may still have Google's underlying engine through at least iOS 5.

Regardless of platform, Mayer raised the possibility of "serendipitous" suggestions in Google Maps, which could suggest things to do based on a user's location and without input. The feature could come within two years, she said.

by MacNN Staff



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  1. linlijunhh

    Joined: Dec 1969



    Comment buried. Show
  1. linlijunhh

    Joined: Dec 1969


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  1. dagamer34

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Map tiles

    It's not as if you can just get map tiles from anywhere. It's a lot of work to build your own and make sure that they are up to date, not to mention the sheer amount of information Google has collected over years of adding data.

    If anything, I see Apple purchasing Placebase and Poly9 so that it's Maps application doesn't have to wait for Google to add new features to the API in order to iOS to use them. The app hasn't changed that much in 4 years, while the Android app is leaps and bounds better.

  1. global.philosopher

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Google may reap their own rewards...

    competition is good. Sitting on a companies board and having close business ties with a company and then competing against them is not not so good.

    Google may make a short term gain with Android but may result in a long term loss. iOS is important to Google but may have shot themselves in the foot when they betrayed them.

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  1. facebook_Clarence

    Via Facebook

    Joined: May 2011


    Apple Maps

    Would make the iPhone even more worthless. Google Maps is the best for a reason.


  1. coffeetime

    Joined: Dec 1969


    I think...

    it's just a matter of time before Apple has its own map, and perhaps even a search engine down the road. You never know what's inside Apple Lab.

  1. wrenchy

    Joined: Dec 1969



    What did you expect her to say??
    Would Steve Jobs do any less?

  1. SockRolid

    Joined: Dec 1969


    She said nothing about AdMob

    Funny. Google makes 96% of their money selling ad impressions to their advertisers. Their real product is your eyeballs on AdMob ads.

    Maps, Docs, droid. All just AdMob delivery platforms.

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