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Nokia to Launch its Maps for iOS and Android Devices

Better friends, than foes. That’s the strategy Nokia is leaning into.

Battered in the smartphone segment by the likes of Samsung and Apple, and ambushed by the Lumia debacle, it’s seeking an alternate route to revival.

In its route to resurrection, it’s not dooming its rivals’ territory by launching an-state-of-the-art smartphone. Rather, it’s spreading its tentacles on their playgrounds, in sanguine attempt to improve its services, and lure the audiences.

Nokia is all set to release an app called ‘Here in’ on App Store. The app would be absolutely free for iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch owners. Nokia has also reassured that it would also be releasing a toolkit, which would allow programmers to make Nokia-powered mapping apps for Android. Meanwhile, Nokia is also in talks with Mozilla, to develop location based features for its new operating system, dubbed as Firefox OS.

The app would provide voice-based navigation and also guide users on public transportation facilities. It would also allow users to download maps for the purpose of offline navigation.

Nokia has always emphasized the prowess of its mapping database, which now holds records of more than 200 countries. Nokia has always showcased how powerful its maps are whenever, and wherever, it found the opportunity. For instance, in the aftermath of Apple Maps debacle, Nokia elaborated how Nokia maps performed better, when compared to Google Maps and of course, not to mention- Apple Maps.

Wonder why Nokia is taking up such a deceptive route, when it can use the feature to its own advantage?

Well, according to Stephen Elop, chief executive of Nokia, to ensure that its mapping platform stays competitive, it needs more users. The more people look-up for directions, or search for places, the more accurate and the smarter the system gets.

This is what he exactly said, in an interview: “For the location platform to be at the highest quality, one needs scale and you need as many different people contributing as possible. Of course, Nokia will build apps, some of them unique to Lumia devices, which gain a competitive advantage for Nokia.”

However, the bitter truth is that Lumia series didn’t do well. And to maintain the quality, it needs more users. With Android and iOS together covering almost 85-90% of the smartphone market, which could have been a better place to resort?

However, Nokia believes, it cannot give away everything to the opposition. Hence, it would keep some features exclusive to itself. For instance, an app called City Lens that allows users to see real-time, dynamic data whenever they point their camera at real world objects won’t be ported to apps for iOS and Android.

However, we do not know if Apple would allow Nokia to release its app on the App Store. We already know how Apple removed Google Maps from its iOS6, and how reluctant it is to allow Google Maps for iOS. Apple seems overtly focus in popularizing its own mapping platform. Hence, we are not sure whether it would allow Nokia to release an app which performs better than its own mapping technology.

Nokia already powers Microsoft’s Bing Maps and Facebook’s Places maps. The move is targeted at only increasing its supremacy on the mapping platform.

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