It’s safe to say that learning about what Apple had planned for their new native iOS Maps application prior to its actual release meant for a compelling prospect. Vector based mapping, turn-by-turn navigation and Flyover all shaping up to be exciting new features, but when iOS 6 launched two and a half months back, the end product seriously under delivered, landing the Cupertino-based company in some serious hot water.
With the loss of faith felt by users of Apple’s new Maps app, there’s been a void for a suitable alternative and despite some such candidates fitting the bill like Nokia’s Here Maps, it hasn’t been until now that Google have offered up their own application, one which will likely see significant popularity amongst the competition.
Despite the fact that older iterations of iOS featured integrated Google mapping services, disagreements between Apple and Google led to the iPhone creators moving away from their reliance in the other’s technology in favour of their own in-house app. Google had wanted to integrate new methods of advertising from within the Maps app as an additional source of revenue, something Apple weren’t comfortable with accepting and which lead to a parting of ways.
The new Google Maps app for iOS features key elements which Apple wanted to feature in their own mapping service, such as vector based mapping for less intensive data usage and is currently compatible with the iPhone. iPad compatibility is likely to follow soon and the app can be picked up for free from the App Store.