Apple Maps Makes Location-Based Updates Ahead Of iOS 10 Redesign
The ‘map wars’ are still hot, hot, hot.
Apple Maps will reportedly add more parking and transit data ahead of this September’s official iOS 10 redesign — a move that highlights both the continued investment in the “map wars” and Apple’s long-range focus on evolving into an entity that can increasingly challenge the likes of Google and HERE maps.
Apple’s forthcoming parking update, first spotted earlier this summer by an AppleInsider reader, looks to automatically drop a pin to locate a vehicle’s location when a drive ends somewhere other than a user’s (previously input) home address. The goal is simply to make it easier for people to remember where they parked.
Is helping forgetful drivers find their vehicle ‘mapping?’ Sure. It involves the use of location data during a user’s journey, and, perhaps more importantly, it’s a bid to help Apple Maps deliver seamless, preemptive service.
Secondly, as TechCrunch reported in its iOS 10 preview, the redesign will — unsurprisingly — involve an updated user interface. Dating back several years, Apple Maps has received criticism for just appearing overall “clunkier” than Google Maps, which is something Apple hopes to address with an overhaul that makes the app easier to use. And, with the updated interface, Apple will reportedly be able to more easily suggest addresses: If it’s 7 PM and the time a user usually travels home, Apple can offer directions for the route.
Will iOS 10 make millions of new users flock to Apple? Probably not. But as HERE Maps rebrands its app as HERE WeGo, Google adds updates to reassert its dominance, and interactive mapping services remain a hot topic — just look at Uber’s major investment in building out its own technology — Apple Maps’ redesign is significant for both users and companies looking to use data from existing mapping powerhouses.
As Marc Prioleau, managing director of Prioleau Advisors told GeoMarketing last year, “I realized a while ago that we’ve got to stop using Apple Maps as a punchline to a joke. They’ve put a lot of effort into it and built a pretty impressive team. Looking back, after Apple Maps launched, you didn’t hear much from them for about a year-and-a-half. After that, they started making some acquisitions like HopStop and four other small purchases. That suggested to me that they had worked through the internal, technology problems and that they were now ready to expand.”
For now, that quiet expansion will include the addition of the aforementioned parking data, as well as reports that Apple will be working on developing a car.
As for the rest? September is only a month away.