Hat tip to my colleague Chris Smith for pointing out that Google has rolled out ads within Google Maps Japan.
It looks like the ads were just contextual based on the location, rather than being from a restaurant-specific search (although I don't read Japanese so I can't tell what the query was).
To me this looks very busy. And I'd imagine the ad density clutter will only get worse over time.
Perhaps Google feels that Japanese users of Google Maps will be more tolerant of the ads and the busier interface? Or perhaps this is the shape of things to come for all us Google Maps users.
Personally I hope it's not the latter. I would not be happy having to wade through a sea of franchise logos whenever I use Google Maps. Honestly I could care less where all the local McDonald's, 7Elevens, AM/PMs, etc. all are.