Google to charge partners who heavily use its Maps API

Posted:
in iPhone edited January 2014
Major partners who serve up more than 25,000 uses per day of the Google Maps application programming interface service will be charged for overages starting in 2012.



It's unknown how -- or even if -- the changes could affect Apple. But Google's decision to start charging its largest partners comes as Apple is believed to be working on its own mapping solution for iOS devices -- a change that might even entirely replace the company's reliance on Google Maps.



According to the BBC, Google will charge $4 per 1,000 views for "hits" that reach more than 25,000 per day. The new charges will apply to partners who use the Google Maps API service to power their own products.



On the iPhone, iPad and iPod touch, the map data and Street View content available in the iOS Maps application is provided by Google. Apple has been using its own location databases since April of 2010, but still relies on Google for supplemental data.



Google's plan to charge partners for heavy use of the Google Maps AI will take effect on Jan. 1, 2012, and the company has said it will only affect 0.35 percent of users. Thor Mitchell, product manager of Google's Maps API, said the charges are necessary to ensure the "long-term future" of the product.



Of course, Google's changes may not affect Apple, as the terms of the deal between the two companies are unknown. Google and Apple extended their partnership for maps and search technology in the iPhone in a new deal inked earlier this year.



Google Chairman Eric Schmidt said at the D9 conference this year that he hoped his company would continue its agreements with Apple for "a long time," though he admitted the relationship between the two companies had come "rough" as competition between Android and iOS continues to grow.



Alternate routes are a new addition to Maps in iOS 5.



Apple's interest in building its own mapping service for iOS has been well documented. This year, the company even publicly admitted that it is working on a "crowd-sourced traffic" service for the iPhone that will become available in "the next couple of years."



Apple has also purchased a number of mapping companies in recent years, including Placebase, Poly9, and C3 Technologies. Apple's efforts to build its own mapping service have also been made plain in a number of job listings advertised by the company, including one highlighted by AppleInsider in September where Apple revealed it wants to "rethink" how people use its Maps application on the iPhone and iPad.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 101
    steven n.steven n. Posts: 1,226member
    Could be one more push to getting that cool Poly9 and C34 tech out the door.
  • Reply 2 of 101
    For the number of iOS users out there, this could potentially cost Apple hundreds of thousands of dollars per day.
  • Reply 3 of 101
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by mbarriault View Post


    For the number of iOS users out there, this could potentially cost Apple hundreds of thousands of dollars per day.



    Potentially but we don't know what the contract is. It could be for the next ten years and has a clause that the terms of use can't be changed.



    Or it is even possible that Apple already agreed to an overage charge, perhaps at a much higher cut off.
  • Reply 4 of 101
    solipsismsolipsism Posts: 25,726member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by charlituna View Post


    Potentially but we don't know what the contract is. It could be for the next ten years and has a clause that the terms of use can't be changed.



    Or it is even possible that Apple already agreed to an overage charge, perhaps at a much higher cut off.



    I'm hoping they have no such contract and this gets Apple's Maps solution (full baked, of course) out into iDevices sooner rather than later.
  • Reply 5 of 101
    jd_in_sbjd_in_sb Posts: 1,600member
    Sounds like maps will be the big software feature in next summer's iPhone. Hopefully it will include Siri giving turn-by-turn directions.
  • Reply 6 of 101
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by jd_in_sb View Post


    Sounds like maps will be the big software feature in next summer's iPhone. Hopefully it will include Siri giving turn-by-turn directions.



    "Next Summer's iPhone" won't likely be released until next Fall.
  • Reply 7 of 101
    saareksaarek Posts: 1,352member
    Well Google had to work out how to monetise Android somehow!
  • Reply 8 of 101
    jd_in_sbjd_in_sb Posts: 1,600member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by anonymouse View Post


    "Next Summer's iPhone" won't likely be released until next Fall.



    I bet you an iTunes credit that it arrives in June!
  • Reply 9 of 101
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by jd_in_sb View Post


    I bet you an iTunes credit that it arrives in June!



    This makes no sense. Why would they release it in June after making us wait until October this year?



    To believe this, one would have to believe that the only reason for the delay this year is that they couldn't get the iPhone 4s finished in time for June, which is a ludicrous assumption.



    Additionally, the pre-christmas sale period has always been the most lucrative and the most important to Apple. With the iPods not selling anymore they need a gangbuster product release in September/October to replace those sales.



    The release was delayed because they wanted to move the traditional release date of the product to a more suitable part of the calendar year.
  • Reply 10 of 101
    In other news, Apple to finally put to use its three mapping companies and remove the need for the Google Maps API.
  • Reply 11 of 101
    nagrommenagromme Posts: 2,834member
    Seems perfectly reasonable to me. I bet Apple is their largest user, and if this is directed at them, so be it: Google will be making more money than before on a very good service, and Apple will still be profitable, I’m sure!



    I for one use the Maps app a LOT—it’s even my location-aware yellow pages/phone book of choice—and I know it’s an Apple app, but the data/tiles/route data come from Google.



    And we all know eventually Apple will move to a new mapping system, which may or may not get any data from Google.
  • Reply 12 of 101
    dacloodacloo Posts: 890member
    I wonder how long it will take before we see Apple vans passing by in the streets, making photos of every corner...



    Street view is also something they'll need to mimic.
  • Reply 13 of 101
    jd_in_sbjd_in_sb Posts: 1,600member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Prof. Peabody View Post


    The release was delayed because they wanted to move the traditional release date of the product to a more suitable part of the calendar year.



    I hadn't considered that. I thought the iPhone 4S was delayed because iOS 5/iCloud wasn't ready.
  • Reply 14 of 101
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by jd_in_sb View Post


    I hadn't considered that. I thought the iPhone 4S was delayed because iOS 5/iCloud wasn't ready.



    iOS 5 would have been ready for the normal release, and I'm sure if they had ever considered keeping that date, iCloud would have been ready, too.
  • Reply 15 of 101
    solipsismsolipsism Posts: 25,726member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Prof. Peabody View Post


    This makes no sense. Why would they release it in June after making us wait until October this year?



    To believe this, one would have to believe that the only reason for the delay this year is that they couldn't get the iPhone 4s finished in time for June, which is a ludicrous assumption.



    Additionally, the pre-christmas sale period has always been the most lucrative and the most important to Apple. With the iPods not selling anymore they need a gangbuster product release in September/October to replace those sales.



    The release was delayed because they wanted to move the traditional release date of the product to a more suitable part of the calendar year.



    That's seems like the most likely scenario. It also puts the release 6 months apart from the iPad instead of just a few months apart. With both products being Apple's most lucrative products using an excessive number of the same components it just makes sense from a business and logistics standpoint. As we've seen, they were able to sell the iPhone 4S in more initial countries while also including 3 US carriers instead of one, with an even faster roll out for secondary and tertiary countries.



    PS: I wonder if the iPod Touch will get an update after the new year. I can see how the Touch would warrant an update before the holidays but it doesn't warrant an update alongside the iPhone so putting it with the iPad update does make some sense.
  • Reply 16 of 101
    solipsismsolipsism Posts: 25,726member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by jd_in_sb View Post


    I hadn't considered that. I thought the iPhone 4S was delayed because iOS 5/iCloud wasn't ready.



    iOS 5.0 was pretty well baked in Beta 1. I have to assume the iOS development team was working on a 12 month release cycle with no knowledge of when the next iPhone would be released. It was only in later Betas things started to unravel a bit as dynamic changes were made.



    As for iCloud I think it's a lot like iTunes Match and the Push Notification Service, not getting released in time wouldn't have affected the iOS release.
  • Reply 17 of 101
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Prof. Peabody View Post


    This makes no sense. Why would they release it in June after making us wait until October this year?



    To believe this, one would have to believe that the only reason for the delay this year is that they couldn't get the iPhone 4s finished in time for June, which is a ludicrous assumption.



    Additionally, the pre-christmas sale period has always been the most lucrative and the most important to Apple. With the iPods not selling anymore they need a gangbuster product release in September/October to replace those sales.



    The release was delayed because they wanted to move the traditional release date of the product to a more suitable part of the calendar year.



    The 4S was not a major redesign and so they could ramp up production quickly before the the big holiday buying season.



    If the iPhone 5 is a major redesign, they would not be able to ramp up as quickly. As a result they will want to release the the phone well before the holidays so they can have adequate supply for the peak season.



    The 5S will probably be a minor redesign and will take place in the fall of 2013.
  • Reply 18 of 101
    I was assuming Apple in the title....but I'm very surprised it's google. Hm....
  • Reply 19 of 101
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by solipsism View Post


    PS: I wonder if the iPod Touch will get an update after the new year. I can see how the Touch would warrant an update before the holidays but it doesn't warrant an update alongside the iPhone so putting it with the iPad update does make some sense.



    You mean the iPad nano?
  • Reply 20 of 101
    Nothing wrong with charging customers.
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