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Drones Could Be Apple’s Trump Card Over Google Maps

( [email protected] ) Dec 05, 2016 09:02 AM EST
Apple Maps did not really take off in a big way, and so far Google Maps has been the far better and more accurate alternative. Will drone technology be able to help Apple narrow the gap -- or even overtake Google?
Google showcases an image of a 3D view of the Cliff House that is located in San Francisco. Google/AP

Apple has not had the best track record when it comes to mapping apps as well as navigation for the consumer. However, they do have deep pockets as well as a slew of creative brains in the company. This allows them to draw on different kinds of ideas in order to gain a competitive edge over the rest of its rivals, and where mapping is concerned, it looks like drones could be called upon in the near future by Cupertino in order to let them have an edge over Google and the Google Maps app.

Just how will drones be able to change the way in which navigation apps work from Apple’s perspective? Well, the use of a drone will be able to let Apple keep track of any kind of changes made to road conditions as well as keeping tabs on construction areas. This will then be able to offer on-the-fly travel updates for users of the corresponding app.

This entire fleet of drones will work in tandem with Apple’s collection of minivans that have cameras installed on them. Such synergy will allow Apple to make amends and improve on their Maps service. There is a whole lot of room for improvement on Apple’s side, where Apple would certainly love to see a revamp in its location services serve up a greater degree of interaction and integration with other retail apps, and even ride-hailing/sharing apps.

This fleet of survey drones would certainly need to have a rather sizeable team to monitor them, as drones do not have the best returns in terms of battery life, and what of the more sensitive areas where laws prohibit drones from flying? It would certainly be interesting to see how Apple will develop this idea, and just how far they would go in terms of implementing it.

Eddy Cue, Apple’s SVP of Internet software and services, shared, “We had long discussions at the ET [executive team] level about the importance of Maps, where we thought it was going in the future, and could we treat it as a third-party app? We don’t do every app. We’re not trying to create a Facebook app. They do a great job. We decided that Maps is integral to our whole platform. There were so many features that we wanted to build that are dependent on that technology, and we couldn’t see ourselves being in a position where that was something that we didn’t own. Let’s say I’m at home doing email before work. I’d like Maps to tell me, ‘Don’t leave now. Your commute will be cut by 15 minutes if you stay home for a while.’ That would be very helpful.”
Relevance in a user’s life is always the perfect trump card for any company to succeed with its products among the masses.

The other thing that would certainly get one thinking is this. If it works, and works well, what is stopping the likes of Google from jumping aboard the same bandwagon and perhaps even improve on it? That would mean Apple would have lost its competitive edge in this particular area. Well, that is the beauty of capitalism, and it is nice to see ideas being thrown about by the big boys to make our everyday lives easier. At the end of the day, if the service is free and it works well, it would be a win-win situation for all of us consumers.

Oh yeah, if Apple comes out tops in this idea, you can bet your bottom dollar that their stock is going to soar once more to a new plateau, simply because you would need an iOS-powered device for it to play nice with the corresponding app.

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