Linked by Thom Holwerda on Thu 20th Sep 2012 19:24 UTC
Apple "The major new feature of the company's new iOS 6 mobile operating system is a new mapping module developed by Apple itself - a replacement for the Google-supplied maps that have been standard on the iPhone since it debuted in 2007. It is a change borne not of user demand, but of corporate politics: Google's Android platform is the biggest competitive threat to the iPhone, so Apple is cutting ties with Google. iPhone owners might have loved Google Maps, but Apple has no love for Google. Unfortunately, Apple's new maps are simply not as good as Google's." That's putting it mildly - my own town barely even exists on Apple's maps. It's basically a trainwreck, and according to The Verge, Apple has been working on this for the past five years. This is what happens when a company cares more about stupid grudges than its customers. Considering how much effort it has taken Google to get where it is now with maps, don't expect Apple's maps to even get near Google Maps any times soon. This isn't going to take months - this is going to take several years, if at all.
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Where have all the principles gone?
by Tony Swash on Fri 21st Sep 2012 16:18 UTC
Tony Swash
Member since:

This forum is awash with those who argue that open is better than closed and that monopolies are a bad thing. Common sense says that once a monopoly has been established breaking it is difficult and it's especially difficult to break a monopoly and immediately deliver to the customer a product or service that is as good as that supplied by the monopoly.

Microsoft's monopoly in both operating systems and productivity apps, two monopolies that mutually reinforced one another, meant it was essentially impossible to offer an alternative OS or productivity suite that didn't have considerable downsides for the end user. And yet there were many here who have argued for a long time for open source solutions and the breaking of monopolies, even if they knew that in the short term this would involve losing functionality or lead to a degraded user experience because it was seen as worth it in order to get out of the straight jacket of the monopoly.

Highly principled stuff. That is until Apple get involved, And then it seems principles evaporate.

Google has a monopoly on mobile mapping. Does anybody deny that Google's share of mobile mapping calls is at least 80%, and is probably higher. Google controlled mapping on both iOS and Android, the operating systems that dominate the smart phone market. Although Google offered various ways for developers and end users to build applications and solutions based on their monopoly proprietary mapping system those offers were within strict limits and were wholly under the control of Google.

There has long been an OpenStreetMap project that has tried to create and provide free geographic data and mapping to anyone who wants it. OpenStreetMap does a pretty good job given it has almost no resources compared to Google's huge financial resources and massive investment in maps.

Google does not work with OpenStreetMap. Google prefers it's mapping system to be proprietary.

So along comes Apple and takes on the massive task of building an alternative to Google's closed map monopoly. Apple does work with OpenStreetMap in fact Apple's maps are based on OpenStreetMap. Given Apple's ability to roll out it's new maps system to almost all of the 400 million or so iOS users pretty quickly Apple stands a chance of breaking Google's map monopoly but it is going to be a rough ride to start.

So what do all the highly principled people at OSNews and elsewhere do? How do they greet this attempt to break a massive and powerful internet service monopoly?

They boo.


Because it's Apple and hating Apple trumps all principles.

So much for principles.

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