Apple said to be talking to Foursquare for maps data

Looking to boost its mobile mapping app, the tech giant is rumored to be discussing data-sharing with the location check-in service.

Apple's CEO Tim Cook unveiling the iPhone 5. He later apologized for the company's beleaguered map application. James Martin/CNET

Days after Google launched its Google Maps iOS app , rumors are circulating that Apple is making another play to beef up its own mobile mapping service.

According to the Wall Street Journal, the tech giant is said to have been talking to social network Foursquare about integrating user data into Apple's maps app. Apparently, Apple senior vice president Eddy Cue has been meeting with Foursquare representatives over the past few weeks about how the service uses data to find locations and business listings.

Apple debuted its new mapping service and booted Google Maps from its mobile devices in September with the release of iOS 6. With the switch over, many users complained of inaccurate data , lack of details, distorted images, and erroneous directions. In the midst of the debacle, Apple CEO Tim Cook said he was "extremely sorry" for the frustration felt by customers and vowed to improve the program.

Google launched its Google Maps app for iOS last week, and today announced that in its first two days on the App Store, the software was downloaded more than 10 million times. Google's app brings back some of the functionality no longer found in Apple's built-in maps software, including Street View technology and public transit directions.

According to the Wall Street Journal, Apple is also supposedly talking to a handful of other local data companies about how to best improve its maps service. If Apple does share data with Foursquare, it could take advantage of certain Foursquare features that would let it differentiate from Google Maps, like user-generated tips and the popularity of certain businesses.

CNET contacted Apple for comment. We'll update the story when we get more information.

 

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