55% of U.S. iOS users with Google Maps use it weekly


According to new findings from Mobidia, around 55 percent of those iOS users in the United States who have Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) Maps installed on their device are using it regularly. The news is notable considering Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) last year booted Google Maps as the default mapping service on its iOS platform in favor of its own Apple Maps.

Although Google Maps remains a popular iOS app, Apple Maps commands a wide lead over Google Maps in overall usage statistics, according to Mobidia. The firm's "penetration" rate found that more than 60 percent of iOS users accessed Apple Maps at least once during the past 30 days. That number was closer to 20 percent for Google Maps. Mobidia's "penetration" rate records the ratio of users doing anything with either app during the past 30 days to the number of users in its panel.

However, in Mobidia's "usage" statistics, Google Maps pulled closer to Apple Maps. According to the firm, more than 80 percent of users who use Apple Maps use it weekly, while 55 percent of users who use Google Maps use it weekly. Mobidia explained that it derived its usage statistics by dividing the number of weekly active users (WAU) in the last seven days by the number of monthly active users (MAU) in the last 30 days.

"Specifically, WAU/MAU is of the users who could use the app, how many used it in a specific week. If this ratio is high, it means that users frequently use the app.  Between Apple Maps and Google Maps on iOS, Apple Maps gets more user attention," wrote Mobidia's Eric Eden.

Mobidia obtained its findings via its mobile app. Millions of mobile users across the globe use Mobidia's "My Data Manager" app on iOS and Android to manage their cellular data consumption. A portion of those users choose to anonymously send reports on their data consumption and application usage to Mobidia, which the company said gives it a view into both on- and off-network data consumption on Wi-Fi networks and on over 600 different cellular networks around the world. Mobidia's application usage data provides a more detailed view of application's popularity than the traditional methods of looking at only download data, the company said.

Apple's removal of Google Maps from its iOS platform was widely seen as a reflection of the escalating battle between Apple's iPhone and vendors using Google's rival Android platform. However, users heavily criticized Apple Maps when it was first released as much less accurate than Google Maps--the outcry even prompted a public apology from Apple CEO Tim Cook, who later said the company is "putting all of our energy into making [Maps] right." Indeed, Apple has acquired a number of mapping startups recently, including  Embark, HopStop Locationary and WifiSLAM.

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