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Google Maps for iOS now available

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December 12, 2012

A standalone Google Maps app is set to launch for iOS sometime today

A standalone Google Maps app is set to launch for iOS sometime today

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One of the most embarrassing chapters in Apple's history has been covered with a Band-Aid. In what can only be a bittersweet milestone for iOS, the Google Maps app is now available in the App Store as a standalone app.

Anatomy of a split

CEOs Tim Cook and Larry Page are only continuing the feud that began with Steve Jobs and E...

CEOs Tim Cook and Larry Page are only continuing the feud that began with Steve Jobs and Eric Schmidt

From the release of the first iPhone through 2011's iOS 5, Google Maps served as the backend to the stock iOS Maps app. In the midst of the ugly rivalry between Apple and Google, Apple opted to drop Google from the app in iOS 6. Apple's replacement wasn't ready for primetime, and has been a tarnish on the company's image.

The split reportedly occurred because Apple wanted Google's voice turn-by-turn navigation, but Google wanted extra perks like Google branding and Google Latitude integration. So Apple, fresh off of buying maps company C3, went ahead with its own mapping solution.

Ugly fallout

Apple Maps had the town of Mildura about 70 km (44 miles) south of its actual location

Apple Maps had the town of Mildura about 70 km (44 miles) south of its actual location

The result was a disaster. Early reports of melted bridges and misplaced towns threatened to overshadow the iPhone 5's otherwise stellar launch. Just this week, police in Victoria, Australia, warned motorists about the dangers of using Apple Maps. The Maps fallout included a public apology from CEO Tim Cook, and the firing of iOS architect Scott Forstall and iOS Maps product manager Rich Williamson.

The new Google Maps app features voiced turn-by-turn navigation, as well as Street View and transit directions. It isn't a universal app, so iPad owners can only use the upscaled iPhone version.

Although the arrival of Google Maps in the App Store doesn't solve Apple's mapping problems, it should at least stop the bleeding.

Google Maps can be downloaded for free from the App Store.

Source: AllThingsD

About the Author
Will Shanklin Will Shanklin covers consumer technology for Gizmag. He's previously written for Android Central, Geek, GottaBeMobile, Android Police, and The Huffington Post.
He lives in New Mexico, U.S., with his lovely wife, Jessica.
  All articles by Will Shanklin
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7 Comments

i also heard Apple had fired the head of the imaps

mikejame078
12th December, 2012 @ 10:06 pm PST

maps in ios6 is such a disaster. Shame on Apple guys. I havent seen such an annoying thing. Everytime i try to find a route it says "direction not found". Feel like throwing away the device out of the car window !!

mannyg
13th December, 2012 @ 01:40 am PST

I didn't realize that Apple users didn't have a decent built in navigation. Thank you Google, you saved me hundreds of dollars on toll-road bypasses and helped guide me through some beautiful remote areas. If you don't have it, you're missing out.

jonoxn
13th December, 2012 @ 03:33 am PST

@ mannyg

yeah, maps wasn't ready for primetime but they didn't really have a choice. Apple users have suffered 3 months of bad mapping to now have two free premium mapping services. All the things google was holding back giving to iOS they've now put in their own service.

Inappropriate Response
13th December, 2012 @ 04:23 am PST

Now Apple has the embarrassment of iTunes 11. Not only is it pig ugly, it is incompatible with the iPod Classic. Syncing results in the loss of most of your music. If, like me, you don't know what you are doing, efforts to back-up to iTunes 10.7 will fail.

I assume that a fix for iTunes 11 will be released soon. If it isn't, I am stuck with two useless iPod classics.

Time to sell Apple stock short?

Page Schorer
13th December, 2012 @ 11:53 am PST

At last - all the MTR exits in Hong Kong have mysteriously reappeared on my new "G-Maps" - and not before time...!

Nick Herbert
13th December, 2012 @ 05:38 pm PST

Well the Google Maps is not available in the App store in India and in the middle east. Does that mean that we are not that important as customers to Apple, we do pay a premium for the apple products as we have to buy the unlocked phones and devices. Sp please have a look into providing us with the New Google Maps

Reuben Barros
19th December, 2012 @ 11:24 am PST
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