Small Louisiana firm claims to have patents
Lake Charles, Louisiana-based Transcenic filed a complaint Friday in the Federal Delaware District Court claiming that Google, Microsoft and AOL (via MapQuest) have infringed on its patents. At issue are street perspective views that the companies use on their mapping websites. Transcenic is looking for unspecified, but tripled damages.
Google Send to Sync sends maps to Ford cars
Ford on Tuesday unveiled a tie-in between its Sync service and Google Maps to speed up GPS navigation. A new option on Google Maps, Send to Sync, will push driving directions from Google Maps on the desktop directly to a car with Sync's navigation turned on. A Bluetooth phone works to send the data to the car using the voice link rather than 3G or a special app.
Company adopts unusual pricing scheme
MapQuest has introduced a new iPhone application, which goes beyond the company's web service to provide narrated, turn-by-turn car navigation. Unlike most such apps, the MapQuest software itself is priced at only $1. The rest of the cost is in monthly and annual subscription fees, which cover updated maps and points of interest, as well route optimization based on traffic, accident and construction updates.
MapQuest iPhone app
MapQuest, the creator of its namesake mapping website, has debuted a version of the site designed specifically for the iPhone and iPod touch. Whereas Apple handheld users were previously directed towards the desktop pages, the site now presents pages formatted for the size of the iPhone, with special controls and larger buttons and fonts. All features of the regular site are recreated, including traffic, driving directions, local searches and gas price rundowns.