Chitika: Google Maps app launch has little impact on iOS 6 adoption


The much-anticipated launch of Google's (NASDAQ:GOOG) native Maps application for Apple's (NASDAQ:AAPL) iOS had little immediate impact on iOS 6 operating system adoption according to new data issued by digital ad network Chitika, dispelling assumptions that many users were waiting to upgrade their Apple hardware until the Google service became available for download.

With the September launch of iOS 6, Apple introduced a homegrown Maps service built to end the iOS platform's longstanding reliance on preloaded Google information. But when the first version of Apple Maps proved to be riddled with errors and omissions, some users proclaimed they would delay upgrading their devices, keeping iOS 5 and its baked-in Google Maps support until an acceptable substitute came along.

Following last week's release of Google Maps for iOS, users can now update to iOS 6, install the app and continue using Google's location services as before. But Chitika data indicates that few consumers are embracing that scenario: When Google Maps for iOS was released at midnight ET on Dec. 13, devices running iOS 6 accounted for 72.77 percent of traffic on the iOS network. As of 2:24 PM on Dec. 14, iOS 6 traffic grew to 72.94 percent, an increase of just 0.17 percent. Chitika adds there was "no immediate impact" at all on iOS 6 adoption rates compared to existing takeup trends across its network.

While it's possible iOS 6 adoption could surge as news of Google Maps for iOS reaches all corners of the population, it's worth noting the app has topped the App Store's Top Free Apps download chart since its release, suggesting consumer awareness of the app is already high. Another theory: While Google never officially confirmed Maps for iOS was in the works, all signs pointed to its eventual release, and it's possible many consumers simply upgraded to iOS 6 in the interim on the assumption the Google app would soon materialize.

Google is rolling out Maps for iOS to iPhone and iPod touch devices running iOS 5.1 and higher. The app is available in more than 40 countries and 29 languages, including English, Chinese, Dutch, French, German, Italian, Japanese and Spanish. Google Maps for iOS is highlighted by turn-by-turn voice navigation, a feature absent from the preinstalled iOS version because of multiple disputes between Google and Apple, as well as vector-based map images available in 2D or 3D views. Google Maps also integrates live traffic conditions, public transit data and details on more than 80 million businesses and points of interest, complete with Street View and Business Photos images, contact information, user ratings and reviews.

For more:
- read this TechCrunch article
- read the Chitika report

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