We’ve heard a lot of rumors surrounding a Google Maps app for iOS over the past week, and now The New York Times is weighing in with information from its own sources. Fortunately, it’s good news: it claims Google is indeed working on a Maps app for iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch, and that the company is hoping to have it ready and released by the end of this year.
Why’s it taking so long? Well, Google had no idea Apple was kicking Google Maps out of iOS until Apple first previewed iOS 6 back in June.
NYT’s report isn’t too dissimilar to that we saw yesterday from The Verge. Its sources also claim that a Google Maps app for iOS is indeed on the way, but that it will take some time to hit the App Store because Google didn’t start work on it until just recently. The company was reportedly “caught off guard” when Apple revealed Google Maps would be kicked from iOS 6:
One reason that it will take Google some time to build the iPhone app: it expected the app with Google’s maps to remain on the iPhone for some time, based on the contract between the two companies, and was caught off guard when Apple decided to build a new application to replace the old one.
[...] Google’s contract with Apple to keep the maps app on the iPhone had more time remaining, and Google did not know that Apple had changed its mind until Apple said publicly in June that it would replace the app with its new maps app, according to two people briefed on the decision.
Earlier this week, Google chairman Eric Schmidt revealed that Google had made no move with a Google Maps app for iOS, sparking speculation that the company may not be developing one at all. However, people involved with the app have confirmed that it’s coming, according to the NYT’s report.
Some users had assumed a Google Maps app would pop up quickly following the launch of iOS 6 — just like the official YouTube app did. But it seems Apple may have given Google a little more notice when it decided to remove the built-in YouTube app from iOS.
Apple has launched its own Maps service with iOS 6, which includes some awesome new features like turn-by-turn navigation and 3D Flyover. However, many users have discovered that the service simply isn’t complete, causing us to wonder whether it was launched a little too early.
- Source The New York Times