With a few views from "Mr Blurry Cam" it looks like the transition from Google Maps to Apple's own maps is almost complete. It even looks like they will be in 3D. It is probably not a surprise to some who have known the rivalry going on between the big mobile players. The new maps application is due out soon, maybe as soon as next month.
Apple's new purchase of C3 Technologies, a 3D mapping company, has not just generated speculation. There are photos floating around on the internet of the map app itself. The iOS 6 version of the Apple software is also expected to come out next month at the WWDC 2012 event in San Francisco. The map makers though, have already created the product. It is an app that can change between a two dimensional view and a three dimensional view with the touch of a button.
The 3D option for the iOS 6 map app has a new silver navigation bar. The switch from blue to silver seems to indicate the iPhone iOS version will be a copy of the one in the iPad. The map app will allow the user to locate themselves on the screen by using a floating "locate me" button in the bottom left of the app. Apple's way of saying it is, "Tap and hold to drop a pin". The "pin" is a balloon that pops up on the app to locate where the user is.
The iOS 6 version of the Apple mobile operating system without Google Maps will be very different. The iPhone has used Google Maps since the very first model. Three years ago there was an indication that Apple wanted to move away from their competitor's software. That happened with their purchase of the "Placebase", a creation of Jaron Waldman. He was not moved by the free Google Maps system and set out to make his own. Apple was watching. Apple has given other signs that they were steering away from Google with their refusal to use the company's map data in the "iPhoto" app for iPad that was released a few months ago.
As usual, the map change will only slightly affect those who are creating the jailbroken version of iOS 6. They, the Dev Team, are usually the ones to release a jailbroken version of iOS even before Apple releases the real thing. The newly created maps will more than likely have the 3D map abilities just like the OEM version.
Look for the revelation of the new map apps, along with iOS 6, at the Worldwide Developer's Conference. It will run from June 11 to the 15 at the "Moscone Center" in sunny San Francisco. It is the largest convention and exhibition complex in town. It will be possible to view for yourself the break Apple is making with Google.