Why is Google Maps not available on the iPhone 5?
Apple and Google couldn’t agree and, when negotiations went south, Apple decided to create their own maps application.
By now, I’m sure you’re aware that the Google Maps is not available on the iPhone 5 and the maps application that Apple has provided sucks. Period.
See Also: iPhone 5 Features List [Infographic]
But why? Why wouldn’t Apple bite the bullet and allow their competitor’s application to be used on the iPhone to provide a more seamless experience for their loyal users?
Well, they tried and things didn’t work out.
According to Business Insider, Apple Executives became frustrated in negotiations with Google and decided to stick it to the man by creating their own maps application.
There were multiple reasons that Apple executives became frustrated with Google:
- Google wanted to increase branding within the Google Maps app and Apple didn’t like the idea.
- Google wouldn’t let Apple use their mapping data to give turn-by-turn directions.
- Google wouldn’t let Apple use their mapping data create vectors which load faster than the traditional bitmaps that Google uses.
In a recent article by the New York Times it is stated that Google is working on creating a Google Maps app for iOS 6 that will be ready by the end of the year.
The article also claims that Google was caught off guard when Apple announced the release of their own maps app in June of this year, assumed that Apple didn’t want Google Maps to be available on the iPhone 5 and therefore didn’t develop a Google Maps app for iOS 6.
Personally, I believe this is Apple trying to do some damage control by putting the blame on Google instead of themselves.
In short, Google has a product that one of their primary competitors, Apple, wants to use. To help retain their competitive advantage (turn-by-turn directions on Android devices) Google would only allow Apple to use their mapping data with limitations.
You can’t really blame Google for not wanting their competitor to take full advantage of one of their core products.
At the same time, you can’t really blame Apple for wanting to provide their users with the best experience possible by leveraging turn-by-turn directions and faster loading maps.
Apple, however, should have waited until their proprietary maps application was more fully developed. I would have done the same thing if I was Apple – start developing my own maps application to avoid relying on Google.
Alternatively however, I would have bit the bullet for the iPhone 5 and allowed Google to limit iOS 6’s use of Google’s map data to provide my users with positive experience until I was fully confident that the new maps app was fully functional.
Apple now realizes that they screwed up big time and they’re begging Google to quickly develop a Google Maps app for the iPhone 5 (probably submitting to Google’s limitations this time) to help remedy the situation.
As you may have heard, this is a situation that certainly would have been avoided had Steve Jobs still been calling the shots at Apple. RIP my friend.