mapping

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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Apple continues with TomTom maps after contract renewal

Apple continues with TomTom maps after contract renewal

Dutch mapping and navigation firm TomTom has announced its continued partnership with Apple, as the two companies have agreed to renew their contract. TomTom has become very valuable to Apple and their iOS devices since 2012, when the Cupertino company launched its own maps application, ending a reliance on Google and their data. Most of Apple's map data for North America and Europe comes from TomTom, and this has allowed Apple to develop its own street-level navigation features.

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Apple quietly acquires Coherent Navigation for precision GPS mapping

Apple quietly acquires Coherent Navigation for precision GPS mapping

Apple could be looking to bolster its mapping services; which have a bit of a spotted history, polarizing iPhone users. Apple just purchased the company Coherent Navigation which specializes in High Integrity GPS. This specialized GPS system differences from consumer-end GPS systems in that it uses data from multiple Iridium satellite networks to give incredibly precise locations--accurate within centimeters. Apple is keeping mum on the deal, confirming the deal with a standard, boilerplate response, "Apple buys smaller technology companies from time to time, and we generally do not discuss our purpose or plans."

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WiFiMapper app relies on crowdsourcing to find free WiFi

WiFiMapper app relies on crowdsourcing to find free WiFi

UK-based OpenSignal has made a record for themselves of gathering useful mobile network coverage data via crowdsourcing. Then they went on to use the same technique for gathering weather information. Now the company has released a new app that crowdsources the next most useful information: free public WiFi hotspots. WiFiMapper, now available for iOS, not only relies on users submitting information on hotspots, but uses OpenSignal's existing data from Foursquare to identify the type of location.

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Google suspends ‘Map Maker’ feature because of pranks

Google suspends ‘Map Maker’ feature because of pranks

Remember the news of a Google Map edit that showed an Android mascot relieving itself on an Apple logo? Well, that — among other low-brow or similarly bad taste edits — have caused Google to suspend edits via Map Maker. The feature, which allows us to make our own edits to maps based on local knowledge, has been sidelined for a limited time, at least to some respect. It seems Google now wants to manually review submissions. This is why we can’t have nice things.

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Uber tipped in bid on HERE mapping service

Uber tipped in bid on HERE mapping service

Uber is best known for matching drivers with riders, but that's not the sum total of its ambitions. The company has been pushing other services that involve transportation, including its UberEATS service, which gets meals to people in select cities. Google Maps is one of the tools it uses to make that happen, but a new business move by the ridesharing service shows that such a reality could be changing. Uber has joined the battle for Nokia's HERE mapping service, placing its own bid for the company.

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Nokia tipped to be wooing Alibaba, Amazon with HERE Maps

Nokia tipped to be wooing Alibaba, Amazon with HERE Maps

Nokia seems to be back in the news, but not entirely in a good way. Just last week revealed that it had indeed agreed to buy Alcatel-Lucent to just focus on the mobile network industry. The move does call into question what the company's real focus and long-term goals are. It also indirectly reaffirms rumors Nokia trying to sell its HERE mapping business to other companies in an attempt shed off excess baggage and probably get some money for that as well. And according to anonymous sources, those companies include giant online retailers Alibaba and Amazon.

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Report: Nokia considering sale of HERE maps business

Report: Nokia considering sale of HERE maps business

Former phone manufacturer Nokia is said to be looking at its options to sell its maps business, known as HERE, as a way to fight its financial debt troubles. This information comes in a new report from Bloomberg, who add that HERE is valued at approximately $2.1 billion, based on Nokia's finance reports. No final decisions have been made at this point, and Bloomberg's sources for this news are "people familiar with the matter," but apparently Nokia is getting assistance from a financial advisor to find a potential deal.

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Apple Maps has two new partners for showing hotel reviews

Apple Maps has two new partners for showing hotel reviews

There are good reasons we like Google Maps when compared to Apple Maps. One of those reasons is Google Maps’ ability to provide us more info than what we’d find with a paper map, which Apple Maps largely fails to do. If you’re a dedicated Apple Maps user, there’s good news. You’ll now see hotel ratings via Apple Maps, provided courtesy of Trip Advisor and booking.com. Prior to these two new partners, Yelp was Apple Maps’ only ratings info provider.

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Nokia HERE improves transit info, no app update required

Nokia HERE improves transit info, no app update required

While Nokia will be largely remembered for its once glorious mobile and smartphone past, it is trying to forge a new image, and it might actually be successful in doing that. One of its latest, and so far its biggest, ventures is in the area of mapping, competing head on with the likes of Google Maps. But HERE Maps isn't a desperate attempt at relevancy. It is actually a formidable contender in this not yet crowded space. And its latest news just proves how much it can go even by itself.

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Nokia HERE Maps for iPhone is out: Here’s why you want it

Nokia HERE Maps for iPhone is out: Here’s why you want it

iPhone owners have another navigation app option today, with Nokia's HERE Maps for iOS landing in the App Store complete with full - and free - offline mapping support. The app, which has been available to Android users since a beta last October, allows those who might commonly be relying on Apple Maps or Google Maps to instead download entire countries-worth of navigation data to their iPhone, meaning even with data turned off while abroad they can still get around.

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Mapillary creates maps with crowdsourced street views

Mapillary creates maps with crowdsourced street views

Mapillary is taking crowdsourcing to the streets, or more precisely, street views. Instead of relying on a single authority (cough, Google Street Views) to relay street level photos, Mapillary lets anyone upload photos of their environment. Mapillary uses the idea that locals can create better images of their surrounding environment than an automated car passing through a city. You can browse through hidden alleyways in Spain, or take a visual drive down the Pacific Coast Highway. You can also upload your own photos using your smartphone camera and their handy app.

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