Mobile Navigation has come a long way, from the humble Nokia 6110 Navigator to the current crop of navigation enabled devices. Nokia earlier had Here Maps, Google has its own Maps and Apple wants to take a lead by mapping literally everything and for this sake it doesn’t mind crowdsourcing.
Apple had launched a new mapping app called Indoor Positioning in the iOS App Store on 27 of October. A closer look reveals that the app has been dedicated to the business owners who can map their venues and later integrate them with Apple Maps.
Although the App is available on App store it can’t be found by searching directly, if you want to check out the new mapping app all you need to do is head to this link and download. Strangely enough, it has also not been listed under the apps “developed by Apple” curation list.
Apple has clearly outlined the fact that unlike other mapping devices, the Indoor Survey wouldn’t require any special hardware and anyone running on iOS 9 can do the survey themselves. That being said, the app as of now comes with a catch, it requires users to link Apple Account to be authorized thus preventing the users from actually mapping with the app.
The app description reads out and we quote “By dropping points on a map within the Survey App, you indicate your position within the venue as you walk through, As you do so, the Indoor Survey App measures the radio frequency (RF) signal data and combines it with an iPhone’s sensor data. The end result is indoor positioning without a need to install special hardware.”
Indoor Survey shares the technology used by WiFiSLAM which was eventually bought by Apple in 2013 for $20 million. Apple has not exactly been active in the maps and navigation technology arena but they seem to have understood the prospects of the same and gearing up to level with the rivals. The Indoor mapping service will chalk out the layout of large business places like Malls and Event venues. In all likelihood, Apple will not just stop with mapping and will add an intuitive touch to it, it might further also includes offers and information about the different business sections in the same venue.
Google already has an Indoor mapping service at place and one can just zoom in to the building to check out its indoor maps. Mapping the indoors will ready a database of indoor maps which can be leveraged for various purposes including cleaning robots. That being said the security concerns regarding the maps is nevertheless averted and we just hope that Apple sets up a more efficient and secure system to avoid vandalization of the maps, like in the classic case of Android peeing on Apple.