Apple may have been keeping its attempt to create a Google-free map app super secret, but a leading online publication managed to catch a whiff of what Apple has been cooking. The snapshots offer little detail and may be described blurry at their best, leading the online community to question their authenticity. Apple IOS 6 3D Maps is scheduled to be unveiled at Worldwide Developer’s Conference (WWDC), alongside iOS 6 next month.
The new 3D maps app will fulfill one of Apple’s most ambitious goals, of making its maps business completely free of Google Maps. As early as 2009, when mobile apps were more or less in their nascent stage, Apple acquired Placebase, a mapping company that was Google Maps’ biggest competitor at that time. Soon, Apple added Poly9 and C3 Technologies to its mapping portfolio. In 2011, Apple had stated that it was working on creating its own databases.
The new maps app will be a product of the technological acumen that Apple has acquired through these companies. Apple’s 2011 acquisition, C3 technologies specializes in 3D mapping and its contribution in the new maps app will be apparent. Now, when users open a map, selecting 3D option from tap menu will allow them to switch between 2D and 3D views from a toggle bar positioned on the bottom of the screen. Apple Maps app will also include a current location detector feature, akin to Google Maps app for Android phones. Sounds like more international patent lawsuits!
Apple began pulling the plug on Google Maps syndication for its products in March this year when it incorporated OpenStreetMap into its iOS iPhoto app, weeding out Google Maps integration. Notorious for the measures it takes to control its products, with the iOS6 Maps app Apple seems to be inching closer to establishing itself as a self-sustainable technology giant.