Mobile

The Google Maps iPhone app is real

The web version of Google Maps is viewable on iOS browsers, such as mobile Chrome.

The web version of Google Maps is viewable on iOS browsers, such as mobile Chrome. // Google

The mythical Google Maps iPhone app possibly coming to an iOS device near you by 2013 exists, a source tells The Wall Street Journal's Amir Efrati and Jessica Lessin. At least a test version of it does and some "individuals outside of the company" are getting to play with it, says "person with direct knowledge of the matter." This is all very exciting for iPhone users who are unhappy "upgrading" to the lesser-than-Google maps app from Apple. But before they get too hopeful, the existence of said app does not guarantee it will arrive on your phone. Google has not yet submitted it to Apple for App Store approval, and Apple could still reject the app leaving its users Google Maps-app-deprived for good—an actual, but maybe unsubstantiated, concern of people within the companyThe Journal's source said it was unclear when Google would even bother submitting it.

Apple does not comment on apps that have not yet been submitted, so no word from them on if they will allow it. The company got rid of Google's maps for its own because it wants to compete. So, it might not accept the app on that basis. Or, maybe it will, in which case: yay. It's all very uncertain. But, at least we're one step closer. And, if it doesn't work out, we'll always have Nokia's more-than-competent  maps.

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// December 19
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