June 30, 2012

More On Google vs. Apple Maps

I know this is supposed to be a blog about geocaching, but location-aware smartphones and their map apps have become such a huge aspect of geocaching (for better or worse), that this topic can't be ignored. Even by an old school, stand-alone GPSr device user such as myself.

This post on the Google Operating System Blog speculates on what features Google may have in store for its map app to stay ahead of the competition, which is especially important now since Apple's announcement that it will be using its own map app in iOS 6 rather than Google's. It is expected that Google's iOS version of its map app wil include features that used to be limited to Android devices, like vectorial maps, offline maps, navigation, integration with Google Places and new features like the "fly-over maps". It's possible we might even see integration of Google Earth and Google Maps on mobile devices.

Check out this short video showing some of the 3D imagery coming to Google Earth for mobile, featuring a cool tour of my home region in the Oakland-San Francisco Bay Area:

In other mapping-related news, presumably in light of the mass exodus of online mapping providers using the Google Maps API (like Groundspeak and Foursquare), Google has drastically lowered the price it charges developers, from $4 to $.50 per 1,000 map loads.

Cache On!

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