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Old Jan 2, 2013, 11:08 AM   #51
jmsait19
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I'm tired of all these fun startups that do a really good job getting bought out by the big established companies that weren't forward thinking enough to do it in the first place... Leave them be...
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Old Jan 2, 2013, 11:11 AM   #52
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I see how this could be good for traffic and turn-by-turn, but what about location based data?

I still think Foursquare would be a better choice for finding the location of businesses. How does Waze hold up against that? Where does its location data come from?
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Old Jan 2, 2013, 11:12 AM   #53
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike MA View Post
Wasn't Apple considering to buy TomTom?
No doubt Apple has considered buying most every tech company at one time or another.
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Old Jan 2, 2013, 11:14 AM   #54
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Originally Posted by jmsait19 View Post
I'm tired of all these fun startups that do a really good job getting bought out by the big established companies that weren't forward thinking enough to do it in the first place... Leave them be...
You're kidding right? Apple is a kind of company that focuses on a very limited amount of things at one time. They can't and will not and should not focus on everything. So buying someone who did focus on something they need now is mostly the best way of doing things. There are millions of startups, that means millions of ideas, most are bad, some are decent, very few are brilliant. You can't have that kind of variety in one single company.
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Old Jan 2, 2013, 11:14 AM   #55
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I was thinking of this as well. The only thing is if Waze was baked into the built in Maps app, everyone on an iPhone would automatically have it. So, the Android users lost could be made up a couple times over because it would be included on every iPhone.
Explain that math to me. Are you saying the # of iPhones outnumber Android around the world? Do you have any install #s as to how many have it on iPhone now vs Android?

Genuinely curious how you think these numbers work out.
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Old Jan 2, 2013, 11:15 AM   #56
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Originally Posted by jmsait19 View Post
I'm tired of all these fun startups that do a really good job getting bought out by the big established companies that weren't forward thinking enough to do it in the first place... Leave them be...
Being bought out by Apple is often the fundamental business plan. Work your butt off developing a fairly good product, then retire in luxury without a care in the world the rest of your life.
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Old Jan 2, 2013, 11:19 AM   #57
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I've been very happy using Waze since it was featured on Apple's page as an alternative to Maps.i have been astounded at the accuracy of the ETAs that Waze shows.

I immediately realized that it would be a perfect buy for Apple to incorporate into Maps. One obvious problem would be limiting it to iOS users as a crowdsourced resource is better for everyone with a larger crowd.

I would like to see Waze rolled into iOS Maps, but remain available as is on other platforms (and expand to other platforms over time). On other platforms, I would incorporate occasional ads that could be paid to be removed, but would be free to remove on iOS. Waze has built-in provision for selling ads for gas stations, but these are inactive around me. I do see icons for Taco Bell and Dunkin' Donuts.


The livemaps feature on Waze is a strength that could be improved by having direct editing in iOS.
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Old Jan 2, 2013, 11:20 AM   #58
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really...so Waze doesnt store its data in a centralized host server environment? because im certain they do. on their site they refer to it as Waze's "big brain". as for community-driven data, this approach is not unique to Waze -- google and apple also try to incorporate crowd-sourced data. if apple were to adopt more of Waze's data and live re-routing that would only benefit Maps, not detract from Waze. even if they killed Waze iOS users benefit from having that functionality in Maps.

so, not buying that Waze is doing something the *opposite* of what others do.
The key with Waze is that they make it "fun" to drive around with the map on collecting "candy" even if you aren't using directions. So that let's them learn your driving patterns. Like when you go to work every day 2-3 different ways...and have to detour for traffic on roads YOU know that are better... They track that stuff which makes them smarter than the "maps down" trying to guess what squiggly lines to have you follow. They are "less smart" but more likely to avoid the "drive off a cliff" problem because they are trying to send you on the most followed path... And they get those by "bribing" you with candy to keep your map on all the time.

WAZE is not great for POI based on search lookup like Google, but better for real traffic patterns. I figured the list of "mapping apps" Apple posted right after IOS 6 was like a grocery list to buy somebody on that list with the best customer feedback.
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Old Jan 2, 2013, 11:22 AM   #59
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What's Cloud/Crowd Sourced?

With Waze are the road and traffic conditions the only things crowd sourced; or is it the mapped address info also?
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Old Jan 2, 2013, 11:24 AM   #60
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I much prefer the idea of Apple getting Foursquare's data. To me, the downside with Apple maps has been the utter lack of results when searching. Addresses and driving within the greater Toronto area have been just fine. Not saying don't improve that since it seems to be the pain point for many, but for points of interest (restaurants, stores, etc) nothing has been better than gMaps but Foursquare could easily topple that.
I'm also in southern Ontario, and I totally agree. Apple's road data here is on par with, and in some cases, better than Google's. The real failing is the lack of point-of-interest data. Which makes it seem funny when the article quotes...

Quote:
Originally Posted by in the article
It would also cost Apple northwards of $500M+ to buy Foursquare (which has raised $71 million is known to be raising another round), and gain, what? The location of restaurants, bars and airports?
... because that's exactly the type of thing they're really missing!

Apple's already quietly using your phone's location data to crowdsource road and traffic data. Waze wouldn't really gain them anything new in that respect, and meanwhile (as others have pointed out) the UI is grossly un-Apple-like in style, and Waze depends heavily on also gaining data from Android users. So, the app itself is useless to Apple, and the map data fixes problems they don't particularly have... I'm really not seeing what the point of buying Waze would be.
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Old Jan 2, 2013, 11:27 AM   #61
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What Apple needs to do is tap into UPS's mapping database and use that...It is considered to be the best real time database of maps in the world.
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Old Jan 2, 2013, 11:29 AM   #62
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The beauty of Waze is the potential reach of Waze because it's cross-platform. Apple shouldn't destroy that.

I'd like it if Apple made a big investment in Waze and in return got the ability to have a "baked in" Waze experience in Apple Maps. I don't see Apple liking the cartoonish look of the Waze map, so they'd probably change the icons and then tie it in with Waze data. For Apple to buy the service outright and shut out untold numbers of users on other platforms would be downright foolish and I hope Waze wouldn't sell out.

If Apple decided to integrate Foursquare POI data with Waze live traffic data and reporting ability, that would be fantastic, I think.

If I could easily do a Foursquare checkin with Apple Maps and still get access to the special deals Foursquare shows plus get Waze traffic data in Apple Maps, that would eliminate two apps from my phone and make Apple Maps one of my most used apps as opposed to being one of the least used like it is currently.
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Old Jan 2, 2013, 11:30 AM   #63
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This over Facebook, Twitter, and Foursquare!
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Old Jan 2, 2013, 11:40 AM   #64
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Apple keeps thinking its going to better Apple Maps by buying its way there. Start innovating!
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Old Jan 2, 2013, 11:56 AM   #65
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Originally Posted by GeekLawyer View Post
This would be a good way to improve the data available to Apple Maps. So long as people would continue to contribute place-data. And being able to "bake" Waze into Maps would presumably make that happen by default.
Agreed. Love to see near time updates for traffic, eventhough it isn't really too bad now.
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Old Jan 2, 2013, 12:05 PM   #66
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I think this decision has just as much to do with Apple beefing up their social credentials as it does mapping. They might see Waze as killing two birds with one stone. Not that Waze would solve all of their problems dealing with social or maps, but it would inject some new blood into the company that has experience in both areas.

The drawback of the social approach is that critical mass is needed, and until then it's not all that useful. I tried Waze when it first came out and abandoned it because nobody else in my area was using it. I returned to it about six months ago, and it's an entirely different experience. Apple could build upon Waze to come up with their own solution to the point-of-interest problem, while using the partnership with Foursquare to bridge the gap until it was ready to be released and while it built up its initial following.
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Old Jan 2, 2013, 12:09 PM   #67
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Waze is a great app, I've been using it for about a year. Though it would be great acquisition for Apple and give it a first class navigation app, Apple's acquisition would be terrible for consumers. Waze is a crowed sourced solution, so it depends on it's users for traffic info. The first thing Apple would do is stop developing Waze for other platforms, thereby reducing the "crowd." Next, Apple who is in the business of selling phones (news flash) would require that Waze work only on the latest iPhone or iPad, thereby locking more people out of using Waze, and ruining the whole idea behind the app. And of course, these days Apple makes great hardware. Everything else? Not so much. Waze is done.
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Old Jan 2, 2013, 12:13 PM   #68
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But, WAZE requires In-car Smartphone Use

I also discovered Waze after Apple suggested alternatives. It is pretty cool, but inputs require one to use and look at your smartphone. In NJ as in many states, that is against the law (hardly enforced, but will Apple want this liability?). While I think the use of a smartphone for Waze inputs is less than using a standalone GPS, I think the police will still view a smartphone in GPS mode as a smartphone, at least in NJ.
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Old Jan 2, 2013, 12:14 PM   #69
diamond.g
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With Waze are the road and traffic conditions the only things crowd sourced; or is it the mapped address info also?
Most of Waze is crowd sourced. You can even go as far as putting parking lots for buildings in the Cartography tool.

I would think that the crowdsourced nature of Waze is opposite to how Apple tends to do things. Plus given the fact that location information is off by default on iOS, I am not sure how Apple integrating Waze into Maps would be useful.
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Old Jan 2, 2013, 12:17 PM   #70
avanpelt
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Originally Posted by Muscle Master View Post
Apple keeps thinking its going to better Apple Maps by buying its way there. Start innovating!
The thing is, with the cash reserves Apple has, I do think they can buy their way there, but they have to invest wisely. If they make the correct moves, a couple billion dollar investment today could easily reap billions upon billions of dollars in profit for them in the next four or five years.

The mapping space has changed considerably since Google Maps started. It's now a highly competitive and evolving field. There are plenty of small to medium-sized companies working in the mapping space today that are doing some pretty amazing stuff. Apple has the cash to invest in/acquire several of these companies and turn their technology into household names nearly overnight like they did with Siri.

Apple knows they have to make some big and (more importantly) smart moves with their Maps app if they want to be a player in the mapping space. They could shelve Apple Maps and sell out to Google Maps again, but I don't suspect they'll go that route. I'm sure most of the folks in Cupertino have Google Maps on their iPhones and they're getting a good idea of what they have to do to compete.

Now, we just have to wait to see how it all plays out this year. I don't expect Apple to go the entire year of 2013 without making a major attempt to recover from the black eye they received from Apple Maps in 2012.
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Old Jan 2, 2013, 12:21 PM   #71
diamond.g
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De-centralized not in the IT department sense of the word, but in the fact that there isn't a central team of map editors sitting at Waze doing its thing. Their approach is more similar to Wikipedia: Depending on their activity, community users have a certain amount of editing powers. Waze as a company is mainly looking after the technology and inks deals to get some base map data into the system. (Plus, of course, they're reaping the profits, the users get "only" the free navigation.)



See above: At Waze and Openstreetmap, you can edit the map data directly via a GUI editor. After your edit, it's in the system and will show up for everyone in the next data update, unless another Waze user edits it again first. (OSM's live map updates within minutes, at Waze it can take anything between a few days and a week.)

At Google and Apple, you, as an end user, don't have direct editing access to the map data. All you can do is send a message to the map team employees that something's wrong. Google's good at getting back to you within a few hours or a day at most, while Apple (at least over here in Berlin) is extremely slow. There are some glaring errors that I (and many others, I am sure) have reported shortly after launch, and not one of them has been fixed, so far.

That's not to say, OSM and Waze are always better: They are really bad in those areas where there aren't many users look at small towns in Germany or the US midwest, for example.
They do, however, follow a very different approach to map making, and one that doesn't mesh very well with Apple's usual approach of controlling every little detail.
I am not sure if it has changed, but originally in Waze you could only edit tiles that you have driven on. When you make a change to an area that you had not driven the change is flagged and an area manager (just another Waze user) could approve or deny the change. Back then you could just send an email with your cartographer coordinates and ask to be an area manager.

Tile updates on the handheld were supposed to be instantaneously updated on the cartographer, but I had never seen that actually happen.
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Old Jan 2, 2013, 12:22 PM   #72
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Plus given the fact that location information is off by default on iOS, I am not sure how Apple integrating Waze into Maps would be useful.
Don't the majority of people enable Location Services on their iPhones as soon as they power them up for the first time? I know I do. An iPhone without Location Services enabled is, to me, almost a dumb phone.

Also, anyone who uses a mapping app of any kind should open the app with the expectation that it's going to ask them for their current location. Otherwise, how would it be useful for turn-by-turn directions if it doesn't know where I am currently?
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Old Jan 2, 2013, 12:23 PM   #73
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I really like Waze. But I'm worried that Apple really has no concept of how to properly integrate a social networking company and they will screw the pooch on this one if they do.
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Old Jan 2, 2013, 12:27 PM   #74
avanpelt
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I also discovered Waze after Apple suggested alternatives. It is pretty cool, but inputs require one to use and look at your smartphone.
Actually, I've gone on trips with Waze where I didn't look at the phone hardly at all. It will warn you of incidents ahead audibly.

Also, you can activate the voice recognition feature by either tapping three fingers on the screen or holding your hand in front of the proximity sensor on your phone. Then, it prompts you to speak and you can say things like "Accident" or "Police" to report those things. All without fumbling with your phone.
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Old Jan 2, 2013, 12:28 PM   #75
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No more police sighting warnings...
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