Google Maps now available on iPhone

The app did not figure when the new iOS 6 was released in September

Google has made its Maps app available on the Apple App Store, after Apple stumbled with its own maps application.

The Google Maps app was available from late Wednesday for Apple's iPhone and iPod touch. "Starting today, we're pleased to announce that Google Maps is here--rolling out across the world in the Apple App Store," Daniel Graf, director of Google Maps for Mobile, wrote in a blog post.

Google said the free app has been 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." The app has been optimized for the iPhone 5.

The app features voice-guided turn-by-turn navigation, Google's Street View and live traffic conditions.

Apple, which had shipped Google's mapping application with the iOS operating system, replaced it with its own mapping application in the new version iOS 6 which was released in September. The application was however found to have glitches, which led Apple's CEO Tim Cook to apologize for the frustration caused to customers.

Police in Mildura town in the Victoria state of Australia advised people earlier this week not to rely on the application after motorists were misguided to a semi-arid national park.

The new Google Maps app is available for the iPhone and iPod touch fourth-generation, iOS 5.1 and higher, in more than 40 countries and in 29 languages, including Chinese, Dutch, English, French, German, Italian, Japanese and Spanish, Google said.

Google also released Wednesday a Google Maps SDK (software development kit) for iOS for developers to feature Google Maps in their applications for the iPod touch, iPhone, and iPad. An iOS app can also launch the Google Maps for iPhone app using a URL scheme, which allows for the launch of a native iOS application from another iOS app or a web application.

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John Ribeiro

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