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Dueling Santa trackers are live

Where's Santa now? Depends whom you ask. NORAD/Bing and Google are both keeping an eye on St. Nick but can't seem to agree on his route around the world to deliver goodies to good children everywhere.

By the time Google placed Santa in Japan, NORAD was already spotting him in northwest China.
Screenshot by Eric Mack/CNET

Santa is on the way. As of this writing, according to Google's new Santa Tracker, Kris Kringle and his reindeer are in Canberra, Australia, dishing out gifts and toys to the girls and boys down under faster than you can say, "Paul Hogan's your uncle."

Those lucky Aussies always get everything before the rest of us, whether it's making it through the Mayan apocalypse unscathed or landing some sweet Christmas swag earlier.

But wait, the long-standing NORAD Santa tracker (now powered by Microsoft's Bing maps) is also monitoring the fat man and his flying venison, too. The official U.S. government-sanctioned Santa tracker currently has him over Japan as I write this.

What's going on here? 2012 has been an ugly year for feuding between mapping services, to be sure, but can't we all just declare a cease-fire for one night, set aside our geodata differences, and agree on where St. Nick is? I mean, that is decidedly naughty behavior, Google and Microsoft.

I'll be watching closely on both trackers to see if Santa makes shorter stops than usual in Redmond and Mountain View.

At least we can all agree it's a good thing the big man isn't using Apple Maps. Wouldn't want him to end up getting stranded in the Bahamas again like that time he used old Chris Columbus's map to get to India.

Merry Christmas, happy holidays, and safe travels to Santa, wherever he is right now.