Placebase, Google and the iPhone

Picture 208There’s of speculation (and many conspiracy theories) about Apple’s purchase of a small mapping company Placebase earlier this year. Placebase had a product called Pushpin, which was a competitor to Google Maps essentially. Pushpin still exists; the product is now being operated by Urban Mapping.

Former Placebase CEO Jaron Waldman is now at Apple, with most of his team — on the “geo team.” I spoke to Waldman at some length a week ago at the Metaplaces event and have known him casually for awhile. Wisely he wouldn’t talk extensively about what he’s doing except to say that he liked being at Apple and that it was a really interesting place.

It’s pretty clear that Apple values geo/location/maps. It’s also clear that Apple considers Google a competitor. So there’s logic behind some of the conspiracy theorists’ statements that Apple may be gearing up at some point to replace Google Maps or have its own proprietary offering. But the geo team, I’ll wager, is about much more than simply maps and Apple already has some patents in the area, which they’re probably working on building out.

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5 Responses to “Placebase, Google and the iPhone”

  1. Robert Kennard says at

    What did Apple pay for Placebase?

  2. Greg Sterling says at

    Undisclosed. Probably not tons and tons. It appears to mainly be a move to get the people.

  3. Who Owns Maps on the iPhone? « Screenwerk says at

    [...] do you think? Do you think this will upset Apple? Do you think that Apple will bounce Google (as many do) from its central mapping role on the [...]

  4. Tim Cohn says at

    Although I don’t have an iPhone, my guide and I saw Ads intermittently on his phone while Fly Fishing in Utah last year.

    Might these be a few of the reasons why Apple bought Coverflow and Placebace?

  5. Tim Cohn says at

    oops – that was supposed to go over here:

    http://gesterling.wordpress.com/2009/10/02/who-owns-maps-on-the-iphone/

  6. Apple Buys Its ‘Google Earth’ says at

    [...] year Apple acquired Google Maps competitor Placebase. Its team became the core of an Apple “geo team.” Now Apple has acquired another [...]

  7. Apple Moving To Close Gap With Android On Speech, Navigation says at

    [...] The company bought Google maps competitor Placebase in 2009 and created a “geo-team.” [...]

  8. Apple Moving To Close Gap With Android On Speech, Navigation says at

    [...] The association bought Google maps aspirant Placebase in 2009 and created a “geo-team.” [...]

  9. Apple Moving To Close Gap With Android On Speech, Navigation | Apple Online says at

    [...] The association bought Google maps aspirant Placebase in 2009 and created a “geo-team.” [...]

  10. esaruoho says at

    Would be lovely to see a refresh of this article with Placebase and Poly9 (which Apple acquired back in 2010)

  11. Apple Maps Inevitable As Company Acquires 3D Mapper C3 says at

    [...] Placebase (in 2009) [...]

  12. Apple Maps Inevitable As Company Acquires 3D Mapper C3 | SEO TIPS - AFFILIATE GUIDE - BLOGGER TIPS says at

    [...] Placebase (in 2009) [...]

  13. Apple Maps Inevitable As Company Acquires 3D Mapper C3 - SATELITE PHOTOS – SATELITE PHOTOS says at

    [...] Placebase (in 2009) [...]

  14. Apple Appears To Displace Google Maps With Own Maps In Some Cases says at

    [...] Placebase (in 2009) [...]

  15. Report: Apple Replacing Google Maps With Own Product In iOS 6 | | IntoxicativeIntoxicative says at

    [...] from its acquisition of Sweden-based C3 Technologies last October. In addition to C3 Apple acquired Placebase in 2009 and Quebec-based Poly9, a Google Earth-like product in [...]

  16. The Apple/Google war rages on; manifests itself in Maps | ZDNet says at

    [...] has made several mapping acquisitions since 2009, including Placebase, Poly9, and C3 Technologies and rumors suggest that its been spending the last few years combining [...]

  17. The Apple/Google war rages on; manifests itself in Maps | Technology News says at

    [...] has made several mapping acquisitions since 2009, including Placebase, Poly9, and C3 Technologies and rumors suggest that its been spending the last few years combining [...]

  18. The Apple/Google war rages on; manifests itself in Maps – ZDNet (blog) says at

    [...] has made several mapping acquisitions since 2009, including Placebase, Poly9, and C3 Technologies and rumors suggest that its been spending the last few years combining [...]

  19. The Apple/Google war rages on; manifests itself in MapsApple Tweet | Apple Tweet says at

    [...] has made several mapping acquisitions since 2009, including Placebase, Poly9, and C3 Technologies and rumors suggest that its been spending the last few years combining [...]

  20. The WSJ Provides Color Commentary On Apple's Impending Eviction Of Google Maps says at

    [...] Placebase (in 2009) [...]

  21. WSJ: Apple Has Been Planning Google Maps’ Ouster “For Years” | | IntoxicativeIntoxicative says at

    [...] Placebase (in 2009) [...]

  22. The WSJ Provides Color Commentary On Apple’s Impending Eviction Of Google Maps | News24 says at

    [...] board, amid growing competition between the two companies, Apple began buying mapping companies: Placebase (in [...]

  23. WSJ: Apple Has Been Planning Google Maps’ Ouster “For Years” — Greig Oliver Media says at

    [...] Placebase (in 2009) [...]

  24. The Apple/Google war rages on; manifests itself in Maps | Teckat - Technology blog says at

    [...] has made several mapping acquisitions since 2009, including Placebase, Poly9, and C3 Technologies and rumors suggest that its been spending the last few years combining [...]

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