herald

Wednesday 13 December 2017

Apple and Google in feud over software

APPLE is dumping Google's mapping service as a built-in feature on iPhones and iPads, escalating the feud between two of the world's most influential companies.

Apple is also making it easier for users of those devices to share their lives on Facebook instead of Google's competing social network.

The snubs are part of an upgraded mobile operating system Apple previewed at its annual developers conference in San Francisco.

Google's mapping service will be replaced by an Apple-designed alternative when the iOS 6 software is released later this year.

Google stands to lose advertising revenue and insights into people's whereabouts if iPhone and iPad users switch to Apple's mapping service.

Apple and Google are locked in a fight for the attention of hundreds of millions of mobile device users. The battle has been building since Google's 2008 release of its Android operating system to compete with the iPhone.

Android smartphones from companies such as Samsung and Motorola are alternatives to the iPhone. Apple has sued those manufacturers, accusing them of ripping off the iPhone's ground-breaking features.

Google's Maps application has been on the iPhone since the device's 2007 debut. At that time, the companies were so close that Eric Schmidt, then Google's CEO, appeared on stage with late Apple co-founder Steve Jobs to hail their kinship.

Before he died last October, Jobs told biographer Walter Isaacson he viewed Android as "grand theft" from Apple and declared "thermonuclear war" against his former ally.

In anticipation of Apple's announcement, Google last week previewed a series of upgrades to its mapping service in an effort to make it more convenient and compelling.

hnews@herald.ie

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