The chances of Google Maps making a very welcome return to the iPhone and iPad are looking slimmer daily, sources at the search giant have claimed.
Earlier this year, Apple replaced Google Maps as iOS devices’ default mapping software with its own, much derided proprietary solution, Apple Maps, which was riddled with inaccuracies and too-too shaming spelling mistakes.
Piqued iPhone and iPad owners – and there was certainly no shortage of them - were at least pacified somewhat by subsequent reports that Google is working on a standalone Google Maps app for the handset. The app, which it’s claimed will be ready to roll by the end of 2012, was expected to be available through the App Store.
However, according to Google insiders cited by the Guardian, Apple is “unlikely” to sanction Google Maps’ return to the iOS platform in the short term. They’re also “not optimistic” that Apple will ever allow a third-party Google Maps app to be sold through its download market.
Instead, it’s expected that Apple, which has cut loose former software head Scott Forstall and ceded greater control over user interfaces to hardware designer Jonathan Ive, will attempt to "keep moving forward” and focus its energies on making its “obviously inferior product better”.
Currently, iOS kit owners who want to use Google Maps can access it via the Google website directly.