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December 18, 2012

Apple in negotiations with Foursquare Labs to enhance iOS Maps app

The company is looking to add more local detail to its heavily-criticised Maps app

By CBR Staff Writer

Apple is in discussions with Foursquare Labs to incorporate its location-based data into iOS mapping application, according to reports.

Foursquare is a location-based service that enables users to find local businesses such as shops, pubs and restaurants. Users can then "check-in" to the location and provide their feedback for others to see.

The Wall Street Journal reported that the iPhone maker is in talks with a number of other companies in a bid to improve the performance of its mapping application by adding more local information.

Apple has already collaborated with Yelp and other data providers for local reviews and listings and has collected about 100 million business listings globally, according to the WSJ.

Apple launched its own mapping service in September 2012 in place of Google Maps, which had previously been preinstalled on all iOS devices. However the new map app drew severe criticism from users, who reported that cities were labelled incorrectly and famous landmarks had been moved to new locations.

Apple’s CEO Tim Cook apologised for the faulty mapping application while the firm also sacked the man in charge of its mapping software.

Meanwhile, Google launched a version of its maps app for the iPhone, which is said to be reworked from the ground up to comply with the requirements for entry to the App Store. Features of Google’s mapping app include voice-guided turn-by-turn navigation, which was not offered when Google Maps was last used on Apple devices.

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