Apple acquires Spotsetter for social maps boost

Spotsetter iPhone display screen with social information

Apple has reportedly acquired a company called Spotsetter in a move that could help boost its mapping offerings over those of rival Google.

Spotsetter specialises in providing social information overlaid on maps, recommending activities, places to eat and sites of interest (pictured above).

The deal was first reported by TechCrunch. V3 contacted Apple for comment on the deal but had received no reply at the time of publication.

However, while the deal has not been formally announced, the CEO and co-founder of Spotsetter, Johnny Lee, wrote on a blog last week that Spotsetter was closing down, and his LinkedIn profile now says he works for Apple in engineering.

ā€œIā€™m announcing that we are closing down Spotsetter app. We still have big dreams for personalised search for places and look forward to seeing great progress in this are,ā€ Lee wrote in a blog.

The other co-founder of SpotSetter, Stephen Tse, is also now listed as working at Apple as a software engineer as of June.

By adding social information to its mapping service Apple could steal a march on Google, which does not currently provide such data when users are on its mapping service, either the desktop version or mobile.

Apple may well incorporate the service into its forthcoming iOS 8 release, which will contain a raft of new features and services after it unveiled its plans for the software during an event last week.

The iOS 8 update is set to arrive in the autumn, while new features and a design overhaul for Mac OS X Yosemite is also on its way.

9 June 2014 | 10:41 am – Source:

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