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Nearly 3 months after Tim Cook apologized for Apple's (AAPL) iOS 6 Maps, a Google Maps (GOOG)...

Nearly 3 months after Tim Cook apologized for Apple's (AAPL) iOS 6 Maps, a Google Maps (GOOG) app is available for the iPhone (an iPad version arrives later). It comes with turn-by-turn navigation, public transit data, and an SDK for 3rd-party apps, as well as some Google Earth and local/POI content that wasn't in the Google Maps apps once pre-loaded on iDevices. The app should also provide Google plenty of ways to integrate local ads. Expect it to rocket up App Store leaderboards in short order. (NYT review) (previous)
Comments (26)
  • Somporn Suksi
    , contributor
    Comments (125) | Send Message
     
    Just downloaded it and it's excellent. All that fussing and fighting a few months back over nothing. AAPL responded to what the customer wants, and approved the app that every pundit thought they wouldn't out of spite. Ultimately the Maps app is decent enough but now there's a choice. Should have little to no impact on bottom line for AAPL and also reinforces the fact that Cook & Co. are listening to the customer and making good when things don't initially work out so well (as in Maps 1.0). NOW... if they would only punish the casino-like trading of AAPL by HF and HFT and do a special dividend or buy back stock to stem this negative momentum, we would have a brilliant start to 2013. Cook & Co., however, probably will not, almost Japanese company-like torpor when it comes to addressing what could be the biggest crash in its stock price and reams of pages of negative press from anyone who can get CNBC airtime... once I was a supporter of him and his cadre; now I have to admit, I'm with Rocco on this one. All that cash on the balance sheet and still the aura of "you shareholders, you don't really matter to us... you're a necessary evil..." The regular dividend is tiny and inconsequential.
    13 Dec 2012, 04:19 AM Reply Like
  • Gloube
    , contributor
    Comments (104) | Send Message
     
    "All that fussing and fighting a few months back over nothing"

     

    Stopped reading here. Another emotional AAPL investor spotted (confirmed by all your other posts on AAPL articles).
    13 Dec 2012, 04:33 AM Reply Like
  • Somporn Suksi
    , contributor
    Comments (125) | Send Message
     
    Glad you stopped reading (and flattered that you are so investigative that you checked some older posts). What I am pointing out is, that Apple would eventually bring Google Maps back if the rationale was stronger than its dislike for Google itself; at the time there were "the sky is falling" type articles and commentary that somehow Cook & Co. were totally out of touch with its user base. 2 months later the app is on the phone. So the fuss was a waste of energy and time. Maps alone was hardly some kind of "sign" that the firm's innovation and competitiveness is behind it, etc. as many said. They tried a release based on lousy data (was it Garmin? TomTom? Both are inferior in general in my opinion) and they fixed it eventually.
    13 Dec 2012, 08:50 AM Reply Like
  • dsr70
    , contributor
    Comments (1403) | Send Message
     
    @somp, my disagreement with your thinking lies here: at the time, the furor for investors was whether it was a sign of a post-Jobs decline in the company. For users the uproar was about the maps quality. To wit, when Jobs famously said it was AAPL's job to worry about the details and make an elegant product for users, well, did they here? When you're the most valuable company in history and arguably the most exalted brand in the world, perfection is the standard- for better or worse. As we've seen in their equity price action since, when you're not perfect things happen. No more, no less.
    13 Dec 2012, 08:54 AM Reply Like
  • kmi
    , contributor
    Comments (3976) | Send Message
     
    I saw Apple dropping Google maps as also indicative of a Cook strategy shift: that he would rather not do business with the companies he perceives steal Apple IP, than make the best product possible.

     

    This could imply a wide range of repercussions: like Apple's current attempts to switch off Samsung for displays and processors. Will Apple let personal affront interfere with the production of the best possible devices? This is the question.

     

    Cook has honestly and openly admitted to mistakes in the past, as did Jobs, which show a willingness to deliver what the market desires, so the fact that the Google Maps app has become available doesn't seem to make too much of a difference to me - yet.
    13 Dec 2012, 10:01 AM Reply Like
  • dsr70
    , contributor
    Comments (1403) | Send Message
     
    Your comments are spot on. It was a decent move to drop Goog maps- it just wasn't executed correctly. I recall reading somewhere the rev that was going to Goog from AAPL and was astonished. The move made sense.

     

    Also interesting is the quick approval. Recall the fight over Voice, and AAPL's long (albeit inconsistent) insistence that apps which duplicate built-in functions aren't allowed. Here they capitulated quickly. Will they continue to fight? I don't know. I can see both the purchase of TomTom or ultimately letting iMaps fade. We don't know who Cook is yet. But one diff- I simply don't think the sub-Apple quality of iMaps would have happened under Jobs. We can't overemphasize what he meant to the company.

     

    Will be interesting to see the Goog Maps app's uptake rate.

     

    Disc: long Jan14 $400 puts @~30
    13 Dec 2012, 10:22 AM Reply Like
  • mitrado
    , contributor
    Comments (1948) | Send Message
     
    "Ultimately the Maps app is decent enough but now there's a choice."

     

    Decent enough as a comedy program perhaps, but not as a Map, that's for sure.
    13 Dec 2012, 04:53 AM Reply Like
  • Somporn Suksi
    , contributor
    Comments (125) | Send Message
     
    I used it in Asia for 3 weeks with no real issues. The detail of streets, etc. and especially not in local language was a negative, but otherwise it wasn't inaccurate in major cities of Singapore, Tokyo, Kyoto, etc. where I was. I'm not sure about the Australian outback but I don't see anything comedic about it. I prefer GOOG Maps personally and relegated iMaps to a folder I rarely access.
    13 Dec 2012, 08:45 AM Reply Like
  • dsr70
    , contributor
    Comments (1403) | Send Message
     
    @somp, what would you think of AAPL buying TomTom? Rumored at this point of course.
    13 Dec 2012, 08:57 AM Reply Like
  • Somporn Suksi
    , contributor
    Comments (125) | Send Message
     
    I can't really see what accretive earnings would emerge with a TomTom purchase. Maps was about selling ads, I suspect, for revenue; I don't know why they just let the 2 map apps sit side by side and those who want to use it, do so, and that's that. The Mail app and Gmail's app sit side by side and no one makes a fuss about that. AAPL is all about hardware and a software ecosystem (and being the best retailer on the planet) and as many say, the maps issue was never enough to drive someone to Droid or elsewhere instead of an iP5. Acquisitions need to generate new revenue streams or complement old revenue streams; better to acquire, say, Sharp, to vertically integrate for the hardware sourcing, than TomTom. Maps is about ads, as far as I understand, and I can't see AAPL becoming a big ad player (they already have iAd I believe, and the fraction of revenue is tiny, from what I recall).
    13 Dec 2012, 11:14 AM Reply Like
  • mitrado
    , contributor
    Comments (1948) | Send Message
     
    "I don't see anything comedic about it."

     

    Well, you don't... but it made millions laugh hysterically. We don't all have the same sense of humour. :-P

     

    A dedicated page was created just for the Mapocalypse! :-D
    Check it out (or not): http://bit.ly/Of194q
    13 Dec 2012, 04:10 PM Reply Like
  • chopchop0
    , contributor
    Comments (3125) | Send Message
     
    This should help iPhone sales as costumers will no longer have to be stuck with an inferior maps program on their desired iGadget
    13 Dec 2012, 07:17 AM Reply Like
  • dsr70
    , contributor
    Comments (1403) | Send Message
     
    Ironically this will help iP5 sales as @chop suggests. Really a terrible misstep by AAPL, which will be compounded if they buy TomTom. Execution my friends, execution. The window for AAPL as a serious maps player is over.
    13 Dec 2012, 07:24 AM Reply Like
  • chabig
    , contributor
    Comments (532) | Send Message
     
    I haven't had any serious issues with Apple's maps. The media just jumped on the Apple bashing bandwagon with this one.
    13 Dec 2012, 09:22 AM Reply Like
  • dsr70
    , contributor
    Comments (1403) | Send Message
     
    @cha, but this is retail. This is brand cachet. Media coverage creates the brand as much as the product does. If most investors are like me, I don't actually care whether the app works or not. I care if it's perceived to work by its users.
    13 Dec 2012, 10:31 AM Reply Like
  • MAdeelA
    , contributor
    Comments (62) | Send Message
     
    Apple will continue to improve on their maps. What they did was smart .Google was getting too comfortable and even had to nerve to think about charging extra for the turn-by-turn feature. Google and Apple both learned the hard way. Don't think for a second that Google didn't lose users on iOS after Apple's move. Not every iOS user will bother downloading Google maps. I won't, I don't use Maps that frequently and ended up with Nokia Here as an alternative.
    13 Dec 2012, 09:37 AM Reply Like
  • chopchop0
    , contributor
    Comments (3125) | Send Message
     
    for every person like you, i know people who either switched (or considered switching) specifically because of Apple maps. Now they will probably stick with their IPhone. Google just helped out Apple a lot by creating this app.
    13 Dec 2012, 10:00 AM Reply Like
  • MAdeelA
    , contributor
    Comments (62) | Send Message
     
    you must know some really impulsive people.
    13 Dec 2012, 10:46 AM Reply Like
  • chopchop0
    , contributor
    Comments (3125) | Send Message
     
    Well, getting lost a few times will make you impulsive when you need a working maps program on your phone

     

    I just find it funny when IPhone fans explain away things like bad maps, no expandable memory, no replaceable battery etc. My friend didn't care about that stuff but he def needed maps and was pissed when apple maps got him lost.
    13 Dec 2012, 10:50 AM Reply Like
  • MAdeelA
    , contributor
    Comments (62) | Send Message
     
    I find it funny when people exaggerate.
    13 Dec 2012, 11:04 AM Reply Like
  • mitrado
    , contributor
    Comments (1948) | Send Message
     
    I find it funny when maps have funny structures that I can't even classify: http://bit.ly/Skcr9a

     

    What the heck is that? A never-ending bridge?
    13 Dec 2012, 04:13 PM Reply Like
  • John1138
    , contributor
    Comments (161) | Send Message
     
    The move forced Googles hand to bring a superior product to the iPhone in replacement of their perpetually inferior version that was always and ever behind their Android offering. No turn by turn directions? No audible directions? No vector drawing for speed and clarity?

     

    Then they get pushed out by Apple and poof: all those features appear in their new product.

     

    As to people who were thinking of switching when iOS dropped Googlemaps? Come on five seconds in you drop a Safari Google maps bookmark icon on your home screen and you were set.
    13 Dec 2012, 10:11 AM Reply Like
  • Joeriii
    , contributor
    Comments (197) | Send Message
     
    Really nice app. Waay better than the HERE maps or IOS maps
    13 Dec 2012, 12:13 PM Reply Like
  • mitrado
    , contributor
    Comments (1948) | Send Message
     
    Joeriii, to take full advantage of Google's products you need Android; to take full advantage of Nokia's products you need Windows Phone. Either way, even the very limited versions of Google Maps and Here for IOS beat Apple Maps.
    And since Apple decided to join forces with Tom Tom, you can bet that won't change over the next 5 years, at least. It's sad... but true. Tom Tom sucks big time. That's why Garmin decided to stick to the more expensive NavTeq.... and it's paying off. Garmin is selling a lot more than Tom Tom.
    13 Dec 2012, 04:20 PM Reply Like
  • Somporn Suksi
    , contributor
    Comments (125) | Send Message
     
    Actually it's been documented that the current iOS version of the new Google Maps is better than that for Android (read NYT's Pogue) and you don't have ads and other distractions on the iOS version. I wouldn't call the iOS version "very limited" at all unless you miss ads and other annoyances. Not sure what you are basing your comment on - but then again, I see you're not really an AAPL fan anyway so why bother.
    14 Dec 2012, 03:35 AM Reply Like
  • chopchop0
    , contributor
    Comments (3125) | Send Message
     
    Better is certainly subjective. There is less integration with other programs. You get a cleaner interface.

     

    Apple users have often sacrificed functionality and robustness in their platform foot ease and simplicity. Google is keeping with that
    14 Dec 2012, 06:53 AM Reply Like
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