Someone has finally stepped up and challenged the giant that is Google Maps. Whether or not this turns out to be a fool hardy move remains to be seen but Apple has developed a competitor for Google Maps. They announced the product OpenStreetMap at the Worldwide Developers Conference, not a totally surprising move for a company known for its love of proprietary software. The real intriguing thing is the possibility for this new map product to have an influence on local search and local digital marketing.
The switch to OpenStreetMap on all IOS devices will definitely cause a substantial decline in Google Maps usage. Very early opinions on the new product straight from WWDC suggest that Apple has designed a great product once again and it even features Yelp integration. Unfortunately Apple’s alternative obviously doesn’t have street view functionality, which is something Google will probably hold on to as a selling point for a long time to come.
Google doesn’t plan on losing their market share easily however. With the recent integration of Google+ Local into Google Maps, Google has incentivised the G+ user base to continue using their service. Google Maps has over 150 million users at this point, Apples product will be hard pressed to compete.
The exciting part about this is the new opportunity for digital marketing campaigns though. There are a lot of IOS devices out there and the new OpenStreetMap will provide a platform for geo targeted and digital marketing campaigns on each and every one of them.
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