Desperate iPhone users download 10 MILLION copies of Google Maps for the iPhone in 48 hours (but find they can't delete Apple's disastrous app)Apple dumped Google from its latest software in SeptemberApple's CEO forced into humiliating apology to customers over errorsGoogle's new app has more features to bring it in line with Android version
10:15 GMT, 18 December 2012
Over ten million iPhone owners downloaded Google's maps app in 48 hours, the search giant has revealed.
The app is expected to replace Apple's own mapping software on the majority of iPhones – although Apple does not let users delete its app.
'More than 10 million downloads in less than 48 hours after release!' said Google's Jeff Huber, announcing the milestone online.
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On the app store: Google has finally released a version of its Maps app for the iPhone 5, after Apple's own equivalent was roundly criticised for its errors
The free app shot to the top of Apple's download chart within hours of its release, and is still there.
'We're excited for the positive reception of Google Maps for iPhone around the world.'
iPhone's default maps app was previously powered by Google until Apple
took over with its own software in early September and blocked users
from using Google's app.
the gadget maker was bombarded with complaints for its app's errors and
forced into a humiliating apology to customers that led to the sacking
of the man in charge of its development.
However, the firm does not let users delete the Apple maps software.
Lost: In one particularly bad error, Australian police warned Apple Maps could kill after it directed users looking for a city to this barren stretch of outback
The app was even blasted by Australian police as 'potentially life threatening' after it sent users off course in the outback.
Today Google thanked its team for the work to create its own app.
'Congratulations to the Maps Team on
the recognition for the passion and hard work they poured into it, for
this release and over the last 7+ years,' said Huber.
The Google Maps app includes
public transport directions and traffic information, for which they are
famous, as well as rotating 2D and 3D views and street view.
Daniel Graf, director of Google Maps for Mobile, wrote on the company's official blog: 'The app shows more map on screen and turns mobile mapping into one intuitive experience.
is designed from the ground up to combine the comprehensiveness and
accuracy of Google Maps with an interface that makes finding what you're
looking for faster and easier.'
Last weej police in Australia warned drivers with iPhones not to navigate with Apple Maps after users looking for one city found themselves in barren outback more than 40 miles away.
Motorists following the much-criticised mapping service to the city of Mildura in the country's south-east ended up in the middle of the nearby Murray-Sunset National Park.
With no nearby water supplies and temperatures in the park reaching as high as 46C, police warned the mapping error had the potential to be 'life-threatening'.
Apple launched the maps service in September after dumping Google's maps in the latest version of its iPhone and iPad software.
Instead, it decided to create its own, using partners such as TomTom for data, while also using helicopters and planes to create 3D maps of major cities.
However, when the app was released, users discovered thousands of flaws.
This led to outrage among users who flooded Twitter and Facebook with examples of Apple's flawed maps.
ANALYSTS WARN APPLE IS ON THE VERGE OF A 'DEATH CROSS'
Apple’s shares may plunge another 20 per cent as the company slides towards a ‘Death Cross’, analysts have claimed.
Investors in the tech giant – the most valuable company in the world – have been ‘panic selling’ and brought the price down from its high of $705 a share in September to its current price of $547.
Now there are fears that it could slump to $420 or lower amid fears Apple has run out of ideas.
Analysts said that the company must avoid what is known as a ‘Death Cross’ where both long and short term prospects look grim.
That will happen when a stock’s 50 day moving average goes below its 200 day moving average – a very real possibility with Apple.
The California-based company has been rocked in recent weeks by reports revealing the strength of the competition from Google and Samsung.
Errors noticed by users and tech reviewers included major towns such as Stratford-upon-Avon appearing to be missing, searches for Manchester United Football Club bringing up Sale United – a football club for the over-fives, and large parts of the world obscured by cloud in satellite views.
The product's shoddiness prompted Apple CEO Tim Cook to replace Scott Forstall, the executive in charge of Apple's mobile operating system, and Richard Williamson, the executive who had overseen the mapping team.
He was even forced into issuing and humiliating apology and recommending that iPhone owners consider using Google maps through a mobile Web browser or seek other alternatives until his company could fix the problems.
Google engineers started working on their new maps app before Apple's September 19 decision to evict them from iOS, Google's Mr Graf said, though he declined to be more specific.
The additional tools in Google's free iPhone mapping app include turn-by-turn directions. These have long been included on Android versions of the software and Google's previous refusal to include it on the iPhone is believed to be one of the reasons Apple decided to develop its own technology.
The friction that has developed between Google and Apple as they jostle for leadership in the increasingly important smartphone market also played a role in the mapping switch.
Google's new iPhone mapping app also
will offer its street-level photography of local neighbourhoods for the
first time on Apple's mobile operating system, as well as
three-dimensional views, public transit directions and listings for more
than 80million businesses.
iPhone app still lacks some of the mapping features available on
Android-powered phones, such as directions in malls and other buildings.
A difficult road ahead: Apple's maps were
slammed for their poor location information and distorted images,
forcing the company into issuing an apology and fire two executives deemed responsible for the mess up
There still isn't a Google mapping app for Apple's top-selling tablet computer, the iPad, but the company plans to make one eventually. In the meantime, iPad users can access see the maps in an iPhone mode.
Google's free mapping solution is likely to become one of the hottest commodities in Apple's app store, if for no other reason because of pent-up demand among iPhone owners fed up with Apple's alternative.
Some iPhone owners even refused to upgrade to Apple's newest software, iOS 6, because they didn't want to lose access to the old Google mapping application built into iOS 5 and earlier versions.
VIDEO: Google Maps find their way back to the iPhone
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