mapping

Uber nabs Microsoft workers and assets in deal

Uber nabs Microsoft workers and assets in deal

It’s no secret Uber has been moving to nab itself some mapping tech, and so its latest announcement isn’t too surprising: Uber will be acquiring some Bing assets from Microsoft, in particular 100 workers who will be tasked with improving Uber’s own mapping efforts. Early last month, Uber had placed a bid on Nokia's HERE mapping service, underscoring its efforts to improve its own mapping technology. Mapping is central to Uber's business model, being used for its various services from cars rides to food delivery. Update: Statement from Uber after the jump.

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Google Maps will soon highlight US railroad crossings during navigation

Google Maps will soon highlight US railroad crossings during navigation

While it's hard to image there could be any remaining road data left that could be added to Google Maps for improvement, it turns out there is, and it could making using the service for navigation purposes a bit safer for drivers. In order to reduce the recent spike in the number of accidents at US railroad crossings, the Federal Railway Administration (FRA) has asked Google Maps to include the location of every public and private highway rail crossing.

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HERE’s common sensor language could steer self-driving cars

HERE’s common sensor language could steer self-driving cars

Nokia HERE is hoping to get connected cars speaking a common language, relying on collaborative mapping to help self-driving cars figure out a route. The Car-to-Cloud interface specification has been released under a creative commons license, so that car manufacturers could adopt it without having to cough up fees in the process; each "message" sent by a car would consist of anonymized data, allowing road conditions and unexpected route issues to be shared without intruding on driver privacy.

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HERE thinks 3D ghost trains could reassure city folk

HERE thinks 3D ghost trains could reassure city folk

HERE may be busy fettling its smartphone software as well as courting potential buyers, but it still has time to cook up concepts for future transit apps. Nokia's mapping and navigation team already pipes public transportation for almost 1,000 cities into its current iPhone and Android apps, but is looking at new 3D visualization interfaces that could replace static maps and make it easier to understand where the next bus or train is.

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Apple’s Transit adds public transit details to Maps

Apple’s Transit adds public transit details to Maps

Apple has detailed its transportation efforts at WWDC 2015, kicking off its discussion by saying that its Maps gets 5 billion user requests every week, and that it trumps the next leading mapping app by a factor of 3.5. Apple Maps will be getting Transit directions, it was revealed, allowing one to get all the details they need on transit lines and the time it will take to travel based on them. This lends better support for all the users out there that use public transit, giving a “great map just for them”. Such is Transit.

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Facebook Messenger drops constant location sharing for user-initiated sharing

Facebook Messenger drops constant location sharing for user-initiated sharing

Facebook Messenger is doing away with its constant location sharing and rolling out a new, user initiated, way to share locations. The previous method would track your location in the background if you had location enabled for Messenger. The process would not only drain your battery from GPS usage, but was downright dangerous in the hands of stalkers or hackers with a desire to find you, face to face. The user initiated location sharing could also signify a big push towards GPS features from the social network as the Head of Product of Messenger, Stan Chudnovsky states, "What we’re launching is the foundation of everything that’s coming."

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Yahoo drops axe on Maps, Pipes, and more

Yahoo drops axe on Maps, Pipes, and more

Yahoo is shuttering its mapping service, slashing availability of Yahoo TV and Yahoo Music, and unplugging Yahoo Pipes in a wide-reaching product cull. The decision, which Yahoo says is to keep it in line with its current focus on search, communications, and digital content, will mean Yahoo Maps will be yanked at the end of June, while other geo-service APIs will also be cut later this year. Meanwhile, older Macs and iOS devices will lose support for synchronizing Yahoo Mail and Contacts.

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HERE boosts offline maps and public transit

HERE boosts offline maps and public transit

Offline navigation may be coming to Google Maps but Nokia's HERE app has long supported it, and is today revamping its offline maps with even more data. One of the biggest improvements is to HERE's mapping of Africa, with navigation and offline support added to seven countries including Cameroon and Equatorial Guinea, not to mention far more road detail. Meanwhile, public transit line accuracy has also been tweaked to making it more illustrative of how you'll actually travel.

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iOS 9’s transit directions to see limited rollout in only 6 cities

iOS 9’s transit directions to see limited rollout in only 6 cities

Expectations continue to grow that next month's WWDC will reveal public transit directions are finally coming to Apple's Maps app in iOS 9. In the three years since Apple ditched Google as its map data supplier and debuted its own mapping service with iOS 6, Apple's offering has been useless to those who commute by bus, subway, or train. So it's great that this much-needed feature is making a return, however it appears it may only be available in six cities around the globe when it launches.

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Apple preps transit directions for iOS 9 and uses robots to map interiors

Apple preps transit directions for iOS 9 and uses robots to map interiors

Apple has some new ideas in the works for improving its Maps in iOS 9. First, Apple quietly acquired GPS company Coherent Navigation and it's precision--within centimeters--GPS technology. Furthermore, Apple is continuing its deal to use TomTom's mapping information, and now Apple will be adding transit directions to the mix. Whether you're looking for bus, subway, or train directions, Apple will be able to direct you through your commute.

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