Apple Finally Buys a Startup to Fix its Faulty Maps App
When Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL) unveiled its Maps app last year, consumers expected it to be the most innovative mapping tool ever created.
After it was released, consumers discovered an app that was not only problematic but downright dangerous.
Apple could have used some of its massive cash reserves to acquire Garmin (NASDAQ: GRMN), the world's largest GPS manufacturer. With a market cap of more than $7 billion, however, Apple may have been unwilling to head in that direction.
Instead, Apple has reportedly acquired a small Canadian startup to fix some of the problems that have been associated with its Maps app.
According to AllThingsD, Apple spokesman Steve Dowling confirmed the acquisition with one very vague statement:
"Apple buys smaller technology companies from time to time, and we generally do not discuss our purpose or plans."
On its website, Locationary claims that it can:
- Eliminate duplicate profiles and fix errors
- Blend data sources into high quality composites
- Easily manage different formats
Terms of the acquisition were not disclosed, but Apple is likely to have paid more than a few million for the company.
In July 2011, Locationary announced that it had raised $2.5 million in financing.
"We're excited to announce that we've closed a new investment round that will enable us to hire more engineers, evolve our local data service offerings and to launch our new local data management system for federating local business place information," Grant Ritchie, founder and CEO of Locationary, said in a company release. "It's a great vote of confidence in our new system that dramatically improves the way local business information is managed and distributed."
Based on Ritchie's previous comments, it seems that Locationary could do more for Apple than simply improve its mapping application.
Louis Bedigian is the Senior Tech Analyst and Features Writer of Benzinga. You can reach him at 248-636-1322 or louis(at)benzingapro(dot)com. Follow him @LouisBedigianBZ
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