For nearly five years, the native Maps application on the iPhone and iPod touch has been powered by Google Maps. But with increasing competition from Google and its Android operating system, Mark Gurman for 9to5Mac reports that Apple will be cutting ties with Google Maps and making use of its own mapping technologies in iOS 6. Gurman, citing his trustworthy sources, says that Apple’s version of Maps will be similar to Google Maps, but much cleaner, faster, and reliable. There will also be a brand new 3D mode that is said to be beautiful and realistic.
The most important aspect of the new Maps application is a powerful new 3D mode. The 3D mode does not come enabled by default, but users simply need to click a 3D button that is conveniently and visibly stored in the app. Perhaps under the fold like the current traffic, pin, and map view buttons. This 3D mode is said to essentially be technology straight from C3 Technologies: beautiful, realisitic graphics based on de-classified missile target algorithms.
The transition to Apple’s own in-house mapping solution has been mentioned as far back as December 2010, when it was suggested that Apple could be working on navigational software of its own to rival Google. Apple has acquired mapping companies such as Placebase, C3 Technologies, and Poly9 over the past few years as it prepares to launch its brand new Maps service. iOS 6 is expected to be previewed at Apple’s annual Worldwide Developers Conference this June 11th – 15th.