Apple replacing Google Maps with own 3D version in iOS 6

Apple will drop Google Maps for the next incarnation of its mobile OS, and use its own 3D alternative.

There's no love lost between Apple and Google, especially when it comes to mobile. Steve Jobs vowed thermonuclear war on Google's Android (though Tim Cook seems a little more relaxed about it all ).

Well now it looks like Apple is sticking two fingers up by dropping Google Maps from the next build of its mobile OS, 9to5Mac reports. Instead, iOS 6 will feature Apple's own mapping software, with natty 3D skills to boot.

Trusted sources claim the new maps app will be made completely in-house by Apple, dropping Google's version, which has been a staple of iOS since 2007. And while it's said to be similar to Google Maps, it should be cleaner, faster and more reliable. And have an awesome 3D mode.

The 3D part comes courtesy of a company Apple acquired called C3 Technologies. It offers photo-realistic models of the world -- and so it should, seeing as it grew out of an aerospace and defence company. That's right, Apple's next mapping software is direct from the military, for missile precision. But it won't show in 3D by default -- you'll have to hit a 3D button in the app.

Apple has also bought mapping companies Placebase, and Poly9 -- combined with C3 Technologies, the three can create a complete mapping database under the Apple umbrella. Apparently the application will just be called Maps.

We reported Apple's acquisition of the 3D mapping company last year -- check out the video below for a taste of what to expect. I think you'll agree it looks better than Google Maps.

Expect more news to come from Apple's World Wide Developers Conference next month. I for one have had enough of Google Maps thinking I'm somewhere I'm not, so would be interested to see what Apple can come up with. But is Apple gaining too much control? Or will it be a surefire improvement? Let me know in the comments, or on Facebook.

About the author

    Joe has been writing about consumer tech for nearly seven years now, but his liking for all things shiny goes back to the Gameboy he received aged eight (and that he still plays on at family gatherings, much to the annoyance of his parents). His pride and joy is an Infocus projector, whose 80-inch picture elevates movie nights to a whole new level.


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