Apple Maps are slowly becoming a decent product. Many users especially in the US are starting to use Apple’s default maps instead of Google Maps.
One of key element of a good mapping portal is a databases of POIs like stores, restaurants, and hotels. Last year Apple started to use content from Booking.com, Yelp and TripAdvisor. Recently Andrew Shotland noticed that a new brand has been listed in Apple Maps’ acknowledgements and copyright page – Foursquare.
It is not clear how Apple is combining all these data sources. Most likely the company uses Locationary engine to do that. Apple bought this Canadian start-up back in 2013. Locationary created a technology which allowed to merge, clean, enhance and redistribute various location datasets. The company was then selling these improved data sources back to publishers and developers.
Foursquare claims to have over 2 million businesses in its database and over 70 million tips submitted by users, so it’s definitely a valuable datasource. Let’s see how well will Apple use it.