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Apple’s OWN mapping service? What Google could lose….

According to “Business Insider Intelligence” (Don’t even get me started on the difference between “data” and “intelligence.” Usually the people who misuse the word “intelligence” the MOST [particularly in government] are the people with the LEAST. :-) ), Apple plans to announce its own mapping service at the Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC) next week. The service will ultimately replace the Google back end for the Maps apple bundled with every iPhone since its debut in 2007.

Own of the things that I noticed about Apple during my year on their Cupertino campus (even though I love the company and its products very much) is Apple’s tendency to embrace “Not Invented Here” (NIH) syndrome. I think that the tendency, as well as the need to compete with Google, makes the report particularly credible!

So what would Google lose?

Statistics from comScore Mobile Metrix that were shared with Business Insider show that, in the United States, Google gets around 31 million users each month on its Maps app on iOS, and that those iOS users each spend 75 minutes in the app each month! These stats mean that about 45% of all traffic to mobile versions of Google Maps in the U.S. comes from iOS and the remaining 55% comes from Android (app versions of Maps only, not counting traffic through a mobile Web browser).

While more monthly users came from Android (34.8 million) than iOS (31.4 million), the average number of DAILY users was much higher on iOS (9.7 million) than Android (7.2 million). This suggests that iOS users touch the Maps app more often than Android users use the Google Maps app.

The iPhone version of Maps also got greater engagement: on average, iOS users spend 75.5 minutes per month using the app, versus 56.2 minutes for Android users on Google Maps apps.

The iPhone version of Maps also has greater reach: 90 percent of all iOS users touched it at least once during April 2012. Only 71% of Android users used the Google Maps app.

Although the creation of its own mapping service by Apple would not greatly affect Google’s revenues (Google earns most of its mobile revenues through search), it may GREATLY affect future revenues through location-based services and locally targeted ads.

We shall just have to wait and see what happens, but we shall not have to wait long!

-Bill at

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