With the launch of iPhoto for iOS last Wednesday, it was quickly noted that the app was not using Google Maps for much of its mapping data, and it was soon revealed that Apple was using data from OpenStreetMap and other sources in the application.

Google Maps has had a prominent presence on the iPhone since its initial launch in 2007, but strained relationships between Google and Apple have seen Apple expressing interest in developing its own mapping solutions. Toward that end, Apple has acquired several mapping companies in recent years in order to beef up its expertise in the area.

ipad retina side by side
Side-by-side comparisons of iPad displays using iBooks, iPhoto, and Mail

AppleInsider now points to an interesting omission on Apple's promotional pages for the new iPad, with a set of images comparing the device's Retina display with the display of the iPad 2 having specifically omitted a comparison of Google Maps even though the comparison images are posted on Apple's servers.

Viewing the file names of the "Retina Gallery" images shows that they are identified with numbers. AppleInsider reader Pierre-Arnaud pointed out on Tuesday that the iBooks images are labeled as "1" and screenshots of "Photos" are "2," but the images of the Mail application are saved with the "retina_gallery_4" filename.

That means the JPG files labeled "3" were originally planned as part of the imagery, but were eventually left out of the promotional material on the finalized website.

Those "3" files are present on Apple's servers and depict a Google Maps route in Paris.

ipad retina google maps
Google Maps photo present on Apple's servers but not used in side-by-side display comparison

Google Maps is not featured in any of Apple's promotional materials for the new iPad, suggesting that Apple is indeed trying to play down the role of Google Maps on the device. But whether this is indicative of a transition to Apple's own mapping services in the relatively near future remains unknown.

Update: As noted in the forum thread, the Google Maps comparison is present on Apple's promotional page in Hong Kong.

Related Roundup: iPad
Buyer's Guide: iPad (Neutral)
Related Forum: iPad

Top Rated Comments

rmwebs Avatar
122 months ago
From what I understand, Google now requires you to watermark their name all over maps that you use for 'commercial reasons'. That could be why Apple didn't post those images

No, thats incorrect. Just like with the OpenMaps Project, Google require their copyright in the bottom corner.

IMO this is not a good move. Google Maps are highly reliable, and the licensing fee is negligible. OSM on the other hand are usually inaccurate unless someone who lives in the area has manually gone into their system and fixed it.

A stupid move all over a stupid feud between the two companies.

Everyone has said that all the lawsuits and stuff haven't affected customers. They will soon if Apple moves to OSM.
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)
basesloaded190 Avatar
122 months ago
Definitely. Here's hoping we get turn-by-turn Siri directions as well.

I would love to get a free turn by turn a la Andriod in iOS6, and with Siri, that would be amazing.
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
rorschach Avatar
122 months ago
Apple would not have spent money to buy those mapping companies for no reason. It's pretty obvious that at some point they are going to ditch Google Maps for their own solution.

It makes sense. The Maps app is one of the core apps of the phone (whether you think the app sucks or not) along with Mail, Safari, etc. Apple doesn't want one of the core features of its flagship product to be dependent on a competitor; and what company would?
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
URFloorMatt Avatar
122 months ago
New maps for ios6?
Definitely. Here's hoping we get turn-by-turn Siri directions as well.
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
basesloaded190 Avatar
122 months ago
New maps for ios6?
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
rmwebs Avatar
122 months ago
Yeah, that's right. Looking at Google Maps now, their footpath coverage is vastly superior to Ordnance Survey. They have so many more cycle routes than OpenStreetMap. And they get every new road on the day it opens. They are so good no-one has ever set up a blog about their foul-ups (http://googlemapsfail.tumblr.com/).

Oh wait, no, that's bollocks.
Dont be stupid.

My statement stood and still stands and nobody has proven me wrong. Instead you've said that OSM is superior in a very minor niche, and certainly not globally.

So here it is again: Google maps is annoying as hell, BUT is the most superior option OVERALL across the GLOBE (I'm not talking about some narrow minded 'US only' crap here- I'm talking above overall, as that is what counts).

If you wish to prove me wrong please do, but as it stands all I've had as responses is tiny snippets of single results (e.g OSM mapped my road better than GMaps) - nobody has a complete global look at it because they know that GMaps is superior.

Get out from under the rock and face facts - as it stands, nobody provides a better online free mapping solution than Google, thats fact, plain and simple.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

iOS 14 on iPhone feature emergency

Apple Releases iOS and iPadOS 14.7.1 With Fix for Touch ID Apple Watch Bug

Monday July 26, 2021 9:48 am PDT by
Apple today released iOS and iPadOS 14.7.1, minor bug fix updates that come just a week after the release of iOS 14.7, software that introduced new Apple Card features and support for the MagSafe Battery Pack. The iOS and iPadOS 14.7.1 updates can be downloaded for free and the software is available on all eligible devices over-the-air in the Settings app. To access the new software, go to...
iPad mini pro feature 2

iPad Mini 6 to Feature 8.3-Inch Display With No Home Button and Narrower Bezels

Monday July 26, 2021 12:26 pm PDT by
The sixth-generation iPad mini that's in the works will have an 8.3-inch display, according to display analyst Ross Young. That will be larger than the current 7.9-inch display, with the larger size due to the removal of the Home button and a narrower bezel design. Rumors about the iPad mini 6 have been picking up in recent weeks ahead of its prospective launch this fall. Apple analyst...
iphone 12 pro gold

Report: iPhone 14 Pro Models to Feature Tough Titanium Alloy Chassis

Monday July 26, 2021 1:12 am PDT by
Next year's "iPhone 14" series is expected to feature high-end models with a new titanium alloy chassis design, claims a new investors report by JP Morgan Chase. According to the report, the use of titanium alloy will be one of the biggest changes to the case design in the 2022 iPhone series, and Foxconn will be the exclusive manufacturer of the titanium frames for the high-end models....
nothing ear 1 buds 1

Nothing 'Ear (1)' True Wireless Earbuds Launch to Take on AirPods Pro With ANC and Unusual Design for $99

Tuesday July 27, 2021 7:57 am PDT by
Nothing, a new brand from OnePlus founder Carl Pei, has today officially launched the "Ear (1)" true wireless earbuds after months of anticipation around the company's AirPods Pro rival. The Ear (1) features an in-ear design, Active Noise Cancelation, Bluetooth 5.2, IPX4 water resistance, and a charging case with Qi-compatible wireless charging and a USB-C port. Fast pairing is supported on...
apple mac business page

Apple Shares 11 Reasons Why Business Users Should Choose Macs

Monday July 26, 2021 11:35 am PDT by
Apple today updated its Apple at Work website with a new section dedicated to the Mac, which offers up 11 reasons why "Mac means business." On the webpage, Apple highlights the M1 chip as the number one reason why business users should choose a Mac, offering up an M1 overview [PDF] that explains the benefits of the M1 chip. The information isn't new, but it does provide a look at all of...
imac with accessories

Larger Redesigned High-End iMac Rumored to Launch Next Year

Monday July 26, 2021 3:45 am PDT by
Apple's larger redesigned iMac will arrive sometime in 2022 rather than later this year, according to the leaker known as "Dylandkt." On Twitter, Dylandkt claimed that Apple's "high end iMac" is not expected to release in the fourth quarter of 2021 alongside Apple's "M1X Macs" – a reference to Apple's redesigned MacBook Pro models – because "Apple simply does not want their devices to...
General iOS 14

iOS 14.7.1 and macOS Big Sur 11.5.1 Patch Security Vulnerability That May Have Been Actively Exploited

Monday July 26, 2021 11:55 am PDT by
Apple today released unexpected iOS 14.7.1 and iPadOS 14.7.1 updates to the public, and according to a newly released support document, the software addresses a serious security vulnerability that may have been exploited in the wild. Apple says that an application may have been able to execute arbitrary code with kernel privileges due to a memory corruption issue. "Apple is aware of a report ...
apple bitcoin hack

Is Apple Really Buying Bitcoin?

Monday July 26, 2021 3:07 am PDT by
A large number of websites and posts on social media are stoking rumors that Apple has purchased $2.5 billion worth of bitcoin in the company's first move into cryptocurrency, but is there any validity to the claims? Many people are citing the fact that Apple was looking for a Business Development Manager with experience in alternative payments, including cryptocurrency, earlier this year as ...
tesla red orange bg feature

Tesla CEO Elon Musk Takes Shots at Apple During Earnings Call

Monday July 26, 2021 4:53 pm PDT by
During a Tesla earnings call that took place today, Tesla CEO Elon Musk spent time sniping at Apple, reports CNBC. Musk criticized Apple's "walled garden" and made comments on the company's cobalt use. In a discussion about plans to allow Tesla competitors to use the Tesla electric vehicle charger network, Musk said that Tesla does not want to create a walled garden to "bludgeon" Tesla...
FaceID iMac REREREREMIX

Gurman: Face ID on the Mac Coming Within a 'Couple of Years'

Sunday July 25, 2021 7:09 am PDT by
Apple plans to bring Face ID to the Mac within the next "couple of years," respected Bloomberg journalist Mark Gurman said today in the latest edition of his Power On newsletter. In the newsletter, Gurman says that he believes Apple's ultimate goal is to shift all of its products to Face ID, including the lower-end iPhones such as the iPhone SE and the iPad Air, which feature Touch ID....