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New Apple Turn-by-Turn Navigation to be Exclusive to iPhone 4S and iPads, Powered By TomTom

The exciting new features that are touted during Apple keynote presentations can sometimes turn out to be a double-edged sword… Case in point—the new Maps app in iOS 6. We’re all excited about having built-in, turn-by-turn directions once Apple’s mobile operating system is updated, but it turns out that it’s a feature that will only apply to the iPhone 4S, iPad 2, and, the new iPad (and future devices).  This new limitation may give iPhone 4 owners another reason to upgrade to the next-gen iPhone later this year.  And that’s just one of the details about the new Maps that has come to light in the day following the introduction of iOS 6 and its updated Maps app.

As we covered yesterday, the new Maps runs completely separate from anything Google, and it’s also capable of rendering in full 3D and doing awesome flyovers of certain areas… So, while thoughts of Google were far from our minds while the new software was being introduced, we’ve since found out that Apple isn’t working completely alone on their new navigation app. To bring a feature as huge as turn-by-turn directions, they’ve gotten help from TomTom, as well as “other” sources.

The discovery was made in looking through the Maps app copyright page, which mentions TomTom by name.  TomTom has also confirmed that they are indeed working with Apple in the new Maps app. This revelation is particularly interesting to those of us who have wondered what’s to become of apps from companies like Garmin, Navigon, etc. Unless you’re partnered with Apple as TomTom is, will iOS 6 mark the end of pricy navigation apps in the App Store?

If you’re not currently invested in an expensive navigation app, then maybe you won’t find a reason to care. We’d have to recommend holding off on any navigation purchases until iOS 6 drops and we see what Maps is made of. After all, looks like iPhone 4S and new iPad users are about to get some form of TomTom for free!


Leave a Comment

  • Dan

    No good reason for turn-by-turn navigation the same as that which exists on standalone navigators not to work on the iPhone 4. It has more than enough processing power and memory. If this basic feature is missing there can be only one reason – Apple trying to force people to upgrade.

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