Google Confirms It Is Yet To Submit Its Own Maps App To Apple

Google Confirms It Is Yet To Submit Its Own Maps App To Apple

This isn’t coming back just yet.

With Google Maps gone from iOS 6 in favor of Apple’s own solution, many are hoping Google will bring its own Maps app to the App Store — as it did with YouTube a couple weeks ago. A recent report claimed that it was already on its way, but according to Google chairman Eric Schmidt, that’s not the case at all. In fact, Google hasn’t even submitted a Maps app to Apple for approval yet.

Shortly after iOS 6 made its debut last Wednesday, it became apparent that Apple’s new Maps app wasn’t quite as complete as Google’s. It boasts some terrific features, such as turn-by-turn navigation and 3D Flyover, but for many, its Maps just aren’t accurate enough. It’s also lacking popular Google Maps features like Street View and transit directions.

With this being the case, a lot of users have been hoping that Google would just develop its own Maps app for iOS for those who would prefer to use Google’s service over Apple’s. One report claimed that Google had done that, and that its app had already been submitted to Apple for App Store approval.

Unfortunately, it seems that report was incorrect. According to Google chairman Eric Schmidt, the company hasn’t “done anything yet” — though it does talk to Apple every day:

“We have not done anything yet,” Google Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt told a small group of reporters during a visit to Tokyo.

“We’ve been talking with (Apple) for a long time. We talk to them every day,” he added.

This is disappointing news, but it doesn’t mean Google Maps for iOS won’t happen. It just means it’s not happening yet. Google has always been quick to embrace Apple’s mobile platform, despite it being a direct competitor to Android, and it has a growing catalog of iOS apps, including Gmail, Google Search, Google Drive, Google Earth, YouTube, and Google+.

Google Maps could certainly happen, then — if Apple approves it. It’s just a case of waiting a little longer than we had originally anticipated.

  • flitzy

    Hopefully Apple does the right thing and rejects it. Google shouldn’t be making money and data off of iOS while, at the same time, stealing everything about it for their terrible Android.

  • Lars Pallesen

    Hopefully Apple does the right thing and rejects it. Google shouldn’t be making money and data off of iOS while, at the same time, stealing everything about it for their terrible Android.

    What a silly thing to say. There are thousands of different developers making money off of iOS apps in different ways. Google would be no different in that regard. The only question that should be relevant to us, the consumers, is whether an app offers us good value or not.
    In the case of a free native Google Maps app with Streetview and transit data I think the answer from most iOS 6 users would be an emphatic “YES, PLEASE!”

  • nolavabo

    What a silly thing to say. There are thousands of different developers making money off of iOS apps in different ways. Google would be no different in that regard. The only question that should be relevant to us, the consumers, is whether an app offers us good value or not.
    In the case of a free native Google Maps app with Streetview and transit data I think the answer from most iOS 6 users would be an emphatic “YES, PLEASE!”

    What needs to be understood here is just how Google makes money from its Maps. Google started charging the app developer for every X times that maps are loaded over the free limit (25,000 per 90 days). IOW, the “free” Maps app that we had before iOS 6 meant that Apple was paying Google every X times that we used it. Specifically $4 per 1000 loads. 200 million iPhone users is how many page loads? This explains why there aren’t a hundred apps already in the App Store that use Google maps. It is for this reason that Google made more money from the average iOS user than from the average Android user. When iOS6 Beta proved that Apple was dumping Google maps, the price was slashed to $0.50 per 1000 loads.

    Apple, therefore, weighed up the costs of continuing to give money to its arch-rival versus the cost of just setting up their own mapping service. And we know their decision.

    If Google were to provide a free Maps app to iOS they would not see any income from all of the users. This is just like YouTube. However, YouTube derives its income from advertising. Google Maps will return to iOS when the advertising revenue from it rises enough for Google to deem it worthwhile.

  • Lars Pallesen
    What a silly thing to say. There are thousands of different developers making money off of iOS apps in different ways. Google would be no different in that regard. The only question that should be relevant to us, the consumers, is whether an app offers us good value or not.
    In the case of a free native Google Maps app with Streetview and transit data I think the answer from most iOS 6 users would be an emphatic “YES, PLEASE!”

    What needs to be understood here is just how Google makes money from its Maps. Google started charging the app developer for every X times that maps are loaded over the free limit (25,000 per 90 days). IOW, the “free” Maps app that we had before iOS 6 meant that Apple was paying Google every X times that we used it. Specifically $4 per 1000 loads. 200 million iPhone users is how many page loads? This explains why there aren’t a hundred apps already in the App Store that use Google maps. It is for this reason that Google made more money from the average iOS user than from the average Android user. When iOS6 Beta proved that Apple was dumping Google maps, the price was slashed to $0.50 per 1000 loads.

    Apple, therefore, weighed up the costs of continuing to give money to its arch-rival versus the cost of just setting up their own mapping service. And we know their decision.

    If Google were to provide a free Maps app to iOS they would not see any income from all of the users. This is just like YouTube. However, YouTube derives its income from advertising. Google Maps will return to iOS when the advertising revenue from it rises enough for Google to deem it worthwhile.

    How Google will turn a profit on a Maps app for iOS is Google’s problem. Whether they’ll charge a couple $ for it, or trough add revenue alone, I do not know, and frankly I don’t care. Anyway, it will be up to each iOS user to decide whether he/she will download Google’s Maps app or not. I don’t really see a big problem there. I think we all understand the reasons why Apple had to sever ties with Google and ditch the preinstalled Google apps on the iPhone. But I think it’s also obvious to the 100 million people who have upgraded to iOS 6 that we, as consumers, are worse off for now with Apple’s version 1.0 of Maps and no Google Maps. Hence the option to download a new version of Google Maps in the App Store can only be a good thing for consumers, as far as I can see. I’m sure Apple will eventually have a nice and accurate Map app of their own, but it may take years to get there. Until then, I think most of us would appreciate the option to download a nice free Google Maps alternative.

  • aratuk

    Every article or blog post premised on the inferiority of iOS Maps should mention that it has been public now for less than a week, and it seems kind of unlikely the situation is going to remain as it is. This is definitely one situation, though, where Apple’s opacity doesn’t serve it well.

    I imagine the gross inaccuracies are going to be resolved pretty quickly, but it doesn’t help that the map service apparently isn’t accessible from anywhere other than an iOS device. There is a tiny “report a problem” link in the app, but people are going to be generally less inclined to submit corrections from their mobile devices — when they’re likely trying to get somewhere.
    If the maps service could be accessed through a browser, the problem could be more readily crowd-sourced in the manner that Google notably takes advantage with. They should have called it a beta, and invited participation.

    I hope public transit information will be integrated, but I doubt there will ever be a Street View equivalent, unless an armada of camera-mounted Mercedes SL55s is about to be launched…
    Street View is only ever practical for getting an idea of what a neighborhood is like, anyway; the addresses are only approximate and generally slightly off, in my experience.

  • FriarNurgle

    Why is everyone up at arms with this whole map fiasco? Sure the current Apple Maps isn’t very god but did that many people use Google maps? It never worked well for me and I picked up a stand alone nav app (Navigon). So even with a crappy Map app from Apple and no Google map, I’m doing just fine.

  • James N Kristal Padilla

    I’m not too fond of the man or his practices but it’s suffice to say he does know more than we do at the moment. Taking his jabs at Apple without fully laughing at them for their failure is to be expected. Now does this make Google better than Apple, only in Maps. Going up against a search technology giant when you are just getting in the game what do you expect? Should he feel sorry for them? No, of course he’s going to say “I told you so.” Apple would do the same thing. Is IOS6 maps completely useless? No, it’s not. It’s not going to win any awards anytime soon but it’s not THAT bad. Apple still has time, as we have now seen them poach cartographers from Google or those who worked on Google Maps before. They know what they are doing. As an Apple fan I can only imagine what Maps can do when they finish and polish up this application.

    In the end I think Google will make if not already waiting approval of a Google Maps application…for free. Just so Google can say “We helped out Apple, and saved their butts.” Just to be a jerk.

  • JohnEva74114655

    what Melissa implied I am dazzled that someone can make $6309 in 1 month on the internet. did you see this page (Click on menu Home more information) http://goo.gl/sxGGf

  • ElVox

    Google Maps for iOS sucked outside the US, tho…at least in Mexico, we never had transit, traffic nor all that many POIs. Waze kills Google Maps on iOS here in .mx, so…no difference, really, except for Street View…that we had and was actually useful.

  • Traveller

    Disagree with flitzy as well. The “right” thing for Apple to do is to accept it for the time being, because doing so means Apple actually cares about the wishes and needs of many customers instead of just caring about “Apple versus Google profits”. And after Apple accepts it, Apple continues to aggressively (but quietly) improve its own Apple Maps. And then down the road, Apple Maps could eventually improve to the point that it can stand on its own as a respectable alternative to GMaps. At THAT point, Apple then makes a big event and “re-introduces” the New And Improved Apple Maps. And guess what? Because most people had continued to keep using Google Maps, they paid little attention to Apple Maps and its low-key development/refining, and hence many people are SURPRISED at how much it improved! People then will go “Whoa! Apple really did improve their Maps app by a lot! They even inserted a few new unique Apple-ish innovations that we never saw in GMaps. What a pleasant surprise!” And only then will Apple redeem themselves of MapGate.

    That is how it’s done.

  • volodoscope

    I don’t think Google will make it available, just to piss off more iPhone users so they buy Android phone.

  • Traveller

    I don’t think Google will make it available, just to piss off more iPhone users so they buy Android phone.

    Hopefully that is not true, because it only escalates the Apple-Google rivalry even more.

    But back to your statement. IF Google were to deny availability of Google Maps to Apple…. then that only proves the sentiment that Apple SHOULD have developed its own Apple Maps app long ago. And thus it proves the short-sightedness of all these iPhone people (and yes I’ve read such comments on the web) whining “Why oh why did Apple even attempt their own horrid Maps app? Why?? What was the entire purpose of developing your own 2nd-rate Maps when someone else already did it better?!”

    Ironically, Google’s ability to suddenly and spitefully drop Google Maps from iOS will prove those whiners wrong. All of a sudden, they now realize why Apple really really really really really…. really needed to develop its own Maps app rather than continue to depend on one of its most cunning treacherous and fiercest rivals.

    Summary: Apple is right in developing its own independent Maps app. But was foolish in not starting development much sooner. *sigh*

  • iPear

    That’s a pretty bad situation Apple is in right now. Google could decide to make their mapping solution an Adroid killer feature. I hope they don’t.

  • Douglas de la Brodoff

    For the time being it is very easy to make your owm Google Maps App. Just go to the Google Maps page using the Safari App, the use the Save As arrow to Save as Add To Home Page. I even got a mini Pop-Up with instructions. Now you have what looks and acts like the Google Maps App, minus a few bells and whistles but with everything I need to get around

  • BlakeCole6

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About the author

Killian BellKillian Bell is a staff writer based in the U.K. He has an interest in all things tech and also covers Android over at CultofAndroid.com. You can follow him on Twitter via @killianbell.

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