New Google Maps App Offers More Search Functionality, Navigation Features & Dedicated Tablet Design

Google Maps logo Google is rolling out a new Google Maps app for Android devices starting today, with iPhone and iPad versions on the way. The new app will include more search functionality, updated navigation features, Zagat reviews and discount offers for specific destinations. Among the new app features, users will be able to find locations without typing by tapping the search box to see cards displaying eat, drink and shopping options. There are also two new navigation features, including one that reports road problems along with incident details, and another that lets users know if a better route is a [...]


Google’s $1 Billion Waze Acquisition To See Antitrust Review

waze-featured It will probably just be a formality; however, Google confirmed this weekend that its proposed acquisition of social mapping platform Waze will undergo US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) antitrust scrutiny. Waze's revenues are minimal; but, the acquisition price is surely what got the FTC's attention. In addition, Waze becomes one fewer potential mapping challenger in the marketplace. According to the Wall Street Journal, the FTC "is expected to focus on whether Waze would have become a head-to-head competitor with Google, whose Google Maps software is the dominant digital mapping and naviga [...]


Google Has 35 Days To Delete UK “SpyView” Data Or Face “Criminal Action”

google-street-view-car The UK data protection authority Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) has served notice that Google must destroy personal information obtained from its Street View WiFi "payload" data collection within 35 days. While Google has a right to appeal the decision, a refusal to comply (absent an appeal) is considered a "criminal office" and could result in prosecution. The ICO letter (.pdf and below) is dated June 11, so the deadline would be mid-July. This ultimatum is the culmination of a UK investigation that began in 2010 following the "WiSpy" revelations that launched investigations [...]


With New Gmail And Chrome Integrations, Is Google Trying To “Colonize” iOS Devices?

New Gmail for iOS Is Google simply trying to create a better user experience on the iPhone and iPad or is it trying to "colonize" iOS with its apps? It all depends on your point of view -- though, it's probably a bit of both. When the new Gmail app for iOS was released May 6, immediately, inflammatory headlines appeared, suggesting that Google was "taking over the iPhone." However, that's not exactly the case. Users of the new Gmail app have the (default) option to go directly to the native versions of YouTube and Google Maps, as well as open Chrome via links in email. Previously, such links would have op [...]


Samsung Introduces Galaxy S4 With Nary A Mention Of Android Or Google

samsung-galaxy-s4-featured At a Broadway-style premiere this evening at New York's Radio City Musical Hall, Samsung unveiled its heavily anticipated Galaxy S4 handset. The event had the hype and production values of an Apple product launch. But, what barely seemed in attendance was any idea that the S4 is an Android phone or contains Google services. Samsung obviously spent a great deal of money on the show. Parts of it were awkward and many of the scripted jokes fell flat. But, the phone is sure to be a hit. The new S4 looks very much like the Galaxy S III (I watched the live stream and haven't held it in my hand [...]


Google Breaks Up Mapping And Commerce Unit, Sends Jeff Huber To Google X

Google has decided to break up the unit that formerly combined mapping and commerce in a mini-reorganization coinciding with the transfer of Android to the leadership of Chrome SVP Sundar Pichai. Jeff Huber who formerly ran the combined commerce + local group is now becoming part of Sergey Brin's "Google X" team. According to the Wall Street Journal: The mapping unit will become part of the Google search team, led by Alan Eustace, and the commerce unit will be tucked into the advertising group, led by Susan Wojcicki.  The change may have been prompted by some tension in the combination o [...]


Most Popular App In The US? It’s Facebook (Thanks To Apple)

mobile-apps-200px Facebook can thank Apple for helping making it the top overall mobile app in the U.S. in 2012, according to new numbers out today from the comScore Mobile Metrix service. ComScore says Facebook ended the year with more than 85 million unique adult visitors -- that's on both Android and iOS. It's about 11 million more unique visitors than Google Maps. After Facebook, Google apps hold down the next five spots. Facebook and Google Maps were pretty much neck-and-neck for several months last year, but comScore says Google Maps usage saw a significant decline after Apple dumped it from iOS [...]


Google Introduces Digital Couponing And Loyalty Solution “Zavers”

Zavers Google has tried its hand over the years at couponing and loyalty marketing. It has done so using a number of different approaches: Google Coupons, Google Offers, Google Offer Ads, Google Wallet and the now-defunct Punchd. Some of these programs have been directed toward small businesses and some more broadly to brands and national marketers. Now comes Zavers, a digital couponing and redemption solution for retailers and manufacturers. Zavers is aimed at large brands and national retailers and intended to help them create and distribute coupons and incentives online and streamline redemp [...]


Google Maps “Returns” To Windows Phones, Scoutmob Goes On A Google Field Trip

Google-Maps This past weekend controversy erupted when someone noticed that Google was redirecting traffic from Google Maps (for mobile web) on Windows Phones to Google.com. Immediately the conspiracy theories began to fly. The claim was that Google had just won an antitrust reprieve from the FTC so now the company was sticking it to competitor Microsoft with impunity. We agree that it looked bad -- and the conspiracy theory made for a sexy and provocative story -- however it simply wasn't accurate. Danny Sullivan wrote an in-depth article about what happened. Google itself offered a number of sli [...]


Five Things Marketers Should Know About Apple Passbook

apple-passbook-featured Unless you've been hiding under a rock during the last couple months, you know that Apple announced the new iPhone 5 back on September 12, 2012. On this date, Apple also rolled out its latest mobile operating system, iOS 6, which came chock full of new features like enhanced Siri, new 3D maps and deeper integration with social networks Twitter and Facebook. Arguably, the most important new feature to arrive on iOS 6 was something called Passbook, which allows marketers to provide coupons, tickets, loyalty cards and more, all in one place on the iPhone or iPad. [caption id="attachment_26 [...]


Google Introduces “Local Discovery” App: Field Trip

Field Trip logo Google's Niantic Labs project, headed by former Google Local/Maps chieftain John Hanke, has just released its first mobile app: Field Trip. Currently it's only available for Android but an iOS version is coming soon. In short it's a customizable "local discovery engine" that runs in the background on your smartphone (or connected tablet, though it's not intended for tablets) and notifies you when you're near something interesting -- across a wide range of categories. Categories include: history and architecture, places and events, lifestyle, offers and deals, food, "cool and unique" and [...]


YouTube Is Top Free App In iTunes Charts; Google Maps To Be Next?

youtube-featured It's been a week since Google released its first ever YouTube app for the iPhone and iPad. It's now the top free app in iTunes and may be a harbinger of what will happen with the expected Google Maps app. YouTube Loses Default Status It may sound odd to some that YouTube is new to Apple's iOS devices as an app, but that's because it hasn't needed to be until now. With iOS 6, which will be installed on the iPhone 5 and available as an upgrade for many older versions of the iPhone and iPad, YouTube is no longer a default application. When news that YouTube was being dropped became clear in [...]


Acer, Skyhook And Google’s Android Self-Interest

android logo Danny has written two articles about Android, openness and the degree of Google's control over the ecosystem. These were sparked by the recent controversy surrounding computer-maker Acer's attempt to use a non-authorized version of Android (the Alibaba-made Aliyun OS) on mobile handsets: Google: Acer Can’t Work On “Non-Compatible Android” & Be Part Of Open Handset Alliance What Is The One True Android & How “Open” Is It? Aliyun OS "Incompatibility" Acer was set to announce that it was going forward with the Aliyun OS on one or more handsets but abruptly cancelled t [...]


Nielsen: 78 Percent Of Mobile Travel Usage Is Google Maps

Google-Maps Google Maps is the top mobile travel app for perhaps obvious reasons. Not surprisingly it also tops the travel category and accounts for a remarkable 78 percent of time spent in the mobile travel usage, according to Nielsen. The firm also reports that the overwhelming majority of mobile travel users' time is spent with apps (vs. the mobile web): Findings showed that U.S. Android and iOS users spent 95 percent of their time accessing travel information from travel apps, versus only 5 percent from the mobile Web. This discrepancy was largely driven by Google Maps—the top Travel category app a [...]


The In-Location Alliance Wants To Take LBS Targeting Inside

smartphone-map-checkin A new quasi-trade group has formed to promote indoor location and mobile indoor-positioning. It's called "The In-Location Alliance." Its stated objective is to "drive innovation and market adoption of high accuracy indoor positioning and related services." The In-Location Alliance is made up of a group of 22 founding members, led by Nokia: Broadcom, CSR, Dialog Semiconductor, Eptisa, Geomobile, Genasys, Indra, Insiteo, Nokia, Nomadic Solutions, Nordic Semiconductor, Nordic Technology Group, NowOn, Primax Electronics, Qualcomm, RapidBlue Solutions, Samsung Electronics, Seolane Innovation, S [...]


With iOS Status On The Ropes, Google To Show “Next Dimension” Of Google Maps

google-maps-next-dimension Google is inviting various media organizations to see "the next dimension of Google Maps" at an event next week in San Francisco. And the timing is just as interesting as what Google plans to show. The event will take place on June 6th, just days before Apple is expected to ditch Google Maps during its June 11 keynote at the Apple WWDC event (also in San Francisco). The Maps app that's on iOS now uses Google Maps, but pales in comparison to the experience that Google Maps offers on Android and the desktop. Apple has been acquiring mapping technology companies over the past few years, [...]


Iran Says It May Sue Google Over Dropping Persian Gulf Name On Google Maps

This morning comes more saber rattling from Iran, the troubled Middle-Eastern regime that routinely issues threats against real and perceived enemies. This time the object of the Iranian leadership's vitriol is Google. Google has dropped the name of the body of water historically known as the "Persian Gulf." The map instead offers no name for the area. According to a report from the Associated Press, "Foreign Ministry spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast says that if Google does not restore the name of the Persian Gulf, it will face 'serious damages.'" The country has threatened to sue Googl [...]


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