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  • Google Says They'll Release Nav for iPhone... If Apple Lets Them


    Google announced earlier today that they would release a beta of Google Maps Navigation, a free service bundled with Google Maps for Android 2.0 when the new Motorola Droid phone is launched by Verizon next week. Google said that they would be willing to bring it to the iPhone, but implied Apple was standing in the way.

    Google Maps Navigation will be a feature of Google Maps on the Droid, providing such functions as turn-by-turn directions, voice recognition and Google Street View.

    "Mobile platforms--Android and others--are so powerful now that you can build client apps that can do magical things connected to the cloud," Google CEO Eric Schmidt said.

    Google said they would be working with Apple on bringing the app to the iPhone. Vic Gundotra, vice president of engineering at Google, said that the development process was different in this case because Google Maps is a built-in iPhone application, he said. He also indicated the software has “stringent” hardware requirements and may not run on older Android phones.

    Google and Apple have come into conflict recently over a number of apps - like Google Voice and Google Latitude - that Apple claims duplicate the "core functionality of the iPhone. Google Maps Navigation may fall into the same category.

    "Apple is a close partner," a Google spokesperson told AppleInsider Wednesday. "Millions of users experience Google Maps on the iPhone. We will continue to work with Apple to bring innovation, including Latitude and Navigation, to users but you'll have to speak to Apple about availability."

    Google is also unclear on whether existing Android phones will be able to run Google Maps Navigation even after they are upgraded to Android 2.0. Gundotra indicated that would depend on the carrier and on the particular phone manufacturer.
    This article was originally published in forum thread: Google Says They'll Release Nav for iPhone... If Apple Lets Them started by Paul Daniel Ash View original post
    Comments 52 Comments
    1. sobeniceguy2's Avatar
      sobeniceguy2 -
      This would be a great thing. Save a bundle on 3rd party apps like Tom Tom or Navizon.
    1. z3r01's Avatar
      z3r01 -
      sux that i might not see this on an iphone
    1. aperry's Avatar
      aperry -
      With Street View and satellite imagery (and the free pricetag) Google has the potential to leapfrog TomTom, Navigon, etc in the Navigation market. In fact, with more and more phones being capable of running Nav apps, this could spell the end for those companies (within 5 years or so).

      If this isn't offered for the iPhone it could become the most blatant example of Apple's ridiculous and arbitrary rules for apps, and unlike Google Voice this is something a lot of people really want.

      Anyway, the iPhone hasn't shown any innovation for over a year and other companies are catching up. I'm all for competition and I'm hopeful that we'll see Apple come out with breakthrough new features soon, but if the next version of the iPhone and its OS is as boring and uneventful as the 3GS and 3.0 OS, I'll be looking much more closely at the Android offerings. This is especially true if the jailbreaking community hasn't come up with anything better than the "tethered jailbreak" for new models. Tethered jailbreak is obviously not a reasonable option for 90% of phone users.

      It's interesting how the iPhone OS, which was so revolutionary a couple of years ago, is looking so stale and boring now. If it wasn't for Winterboard I'm not sure I'd own one right now.
    1. CaptainChaos's Avatar
      CaptainChaos -
      Apple will not need this once they have implemented their own Nav system into the phone. Where it is nice for Google to offer it for free I don't see Apple making anything off of it which is not in their best interest.
    1. aperry's Avatar
      aperry -
      Quote Originally Posted by CaptainChaos View Post
      Apple will not need this once they have implemented their own Nav system into the phone. Where it is nice for Google to offer it for free I don't see Apple making anything off of it which is not in their best interest.
      Apple doesn't make anything off of the other tens of thousands of free iPhone apps either, but they are approved and available.

      I wish they would just be more honest with their acceptance policies: "We won't accept any apps that are not in our best interests."

      Their current acceptance policies do not include any reasons for rejecting Google's nav app as it's been described, so chances are that this will be another stealthy "no real reasons given" rejection.

      Anyway, I can't wait to see Apple's Street View functionality. I'm sure it'll be really great.
    1. aekhamsouk's Avatar
      aekhamsouk -
      Quote Originally Posted by Poseidon79 View Post
      Why is it that everone with less than 100 posts is so quick to judge.. Be extremely negative.. Not think critically.. And use bad language...? Geez
      i'll be sure to mention this post, when apple rejects the app!
    1. Enkidu's Avatar
      Enkidu -
      Let me get this straight:

      - Google announces their own free navigation app
      - It's uncertain, if Apple will allow it (what if they do...?)
      - None of you guys posting here has tried this application yet; Could be... no so great right?

      = Everybody whining how eff'ed up their iPhone is.

      Even though I kinda feel people's pain, regarding Apple policy towards jailbreaking, I don't really understand this strange behaviour.

      Maybe some of you spend too much time thinking about your iPhone...
    1. aekhamsouk's Avatar
      aekhamsouk -
      Quote Originally Posted by Enkidu View Post
      Let me get this straight:

      - Google announces their own free navigation app
      - It's uncertain, if Apple will allow it (what if they do...?)
      - None of you guys posting here has tried this application yet; Could be... no so great right?

      = Everybody whining how eff'ed up their iPhone is.

      Even though I kinda feel people's pain, regarding Apple policy towards jailbreaking, I don't really understand this strange behaviour.

      Maybe some of you spend too much time thinking about your iPhone...
      considering google's track record... i'm willing to bet it'll be a good app... especially the price!
    1. adrian1480's Avatar
      adrian1480 -
      Quote Originally Posted by StealthBravo View Post
      Looks great but it will never make it to the iPhone
      this.

      thanks, Apple.
    1. southfrisco's Avatar
      southfrisco -
      While Googles iNav app looks great there is a drawback in using it as opposed to a native on board Nav app.

      Googles iNav app pulls data at the beginning and keeps this on the device for your route. Problem is if you miss an exit, you have to have a data connection to re-pull the information and create a new route (roaming will kill you here if you are out of your call area). This is something an onboard Nav app can do on the fly very easily and seamlessly which has saved me numerous times using Navigon.

      The one big plus this has is Google search and voice commands. Still not enough to get me to switch at this point. I am going to wait until next June/July to see if Apple comes to the table with some great new enhancements to the next iPhone. I won't drop everything for a Droid, it just doesn't shout MUST HAVE to me.

      By that time who knows, maybe the map app will have this feature. The standard apps on the iPhone don't change until new hardware comes out, or at least that has been the MO with Apple.
    1. rwin84's Avatar
      rwin84 -
      gimme gimme