Apple should buy social nav app Waze to improve Maps data

By , Jan 2, 2013

waze

When it comes to apps, nothing strikes a nerve more than mapping. We saw this when Apple Maps literally and figuratively drove off a cliff, only later to be saved by Google Maps. Needless to say, having Apple’s fat pulled out of the fire by its chief rival didn’t make execs in Cupertino too happy.

That’s the backstory behind the latest mapping rumor afloat: the potential acquisition by Apple of social navigation app Waze. According to reports, Apple is in fact considering purchasing Waze.

Their iPhone app crowdsources the positions of moving cars to turn the mundane task of finding locations into a social game. Waze, already a partner with Apple Maps, has likely gained the iPhone maker’s attention when iOS 6 Maps was going down in flames…

Update: TechCrunch’s MG Siegler says there’s no deal in sight.

Techcrunch points out that buying Waze makes much more sense then a recent rumor about Apple buying Foursquare, the check-in app popular mostly in the US. While it would cost more than $500 million to snap-up Foursquare, with Waze “Apple could acquire far better mapping data and a real driving app”, according to the site.

Not surprisingly, both Apple and Waze refused to comment on the rumor. The Israeli media is also joining in on the speculation. No matter how you look at this story, it does appear, as rumors go, that talk of an Apple buyout of Waze makes more sense than the Foursquare talk.

Where speculation that Apple would purchase Foursquare was launched by a single Twitter message, rumors about Waze include the fact that Apple already has some connection with the app maker.

Either way, to prevent Google Maps from overwhelming Apple’s foray into mapping, the company will need to acquire more talent. A certain method for accomplishing that would be buying a navigation, already popular with users.

What do you think?

Does this rumor have a good chance of being based in fact?

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  • http://twitter.com/Jackzzz99 Jack Wong

    Somehow Waze doesn’t has the option to avoid the toll… -.-;

  • http://www.facebook.com/joe.jonsen Joe Jonsen

    NO!! apple should buy tom-tom

    • No Whammy

      TomTom is one of Apple’s partners, probably for directions, lol….BTW, so is Waze; ROFL.

      From Maps, peel the map up to see “Standard, Hybrid, Satellite, etc.” above all 7 buttons you’ll see, “Data from TomTom, others >” and clicking will give you a large list of data providers/partners.

      Alternatively, go here: http://gspa21.ls.apple.com/html/attribution.html

      • Falk M.

        Usually Apple only buys companies to buy talent and patents, not necessarily data/product licenses.

      • Dhob187

        If they will but people from Waze, Waze will halt it’s software, same result

      • Falk M.

        I said that because he made the impression by all his rofling that he thought such a purchase were unnecessary.

      • No Whammy

        I just thought it was funny this thread is so full of “Apple should use TomTom/Waze”…meanwhile, they use them currently. Don’t really care about purchasing them.

        Another interesting observation that this article misses: Apple should use Open Street Maps and not pay a dime, then collect data from users to contribute back to OSM…Waze is basically a for-profit, Israeli version of OSM.

  • WolfgangHoltz

    Better solution buy Google. Problem solved.

    • selcukcura

      isnt gonna happen

    • Falk M.

      God no, somebody has to pressure Apple a bit in terms of mobile OS and web services.

  • iBanks

    Waze is the best Navigation app, Hands Down. Paid over $70 for Navigon and never used it again since Waze was released.

  • Dhob187

    I would hate for a great FREE app like waze which is cross platform and user updatable to be purchased by a closed minded company like apple.
    Apple will surely ruin this great and awsome GPS app !

  • http://twitter.com/researchrants Research Rants

    I really hope not. Waze is fantastic, and I can’t imagine Apple keeping it operating as it now does, with any user empowered to fix map problems.

  • http://www.facebook.com/scottweidig Scott Weidig

    Would love for that to happen. Wake is a goth for me. Maps have become more than just getting from point A-B. understanding what is happening on the route in real time is an essential. Waze that down. Also, Jack yes it does. Go into Settings>Navigation.

  • http://www.facebook.com/antman217 Anthony Antunez

    I would accept it only if Apple still allowed the Waze app to remain on other platforms. It would suck if Apple just took it away from everyone else but of course would increase competition which is always welcome so it go either way.

  • Lobo555

    They should buy it and also buy transit apps for public transportation