Google Maps Navigation: A Free, Ass-Kicking, Turn-by-Turn Mobile App — Google maps navigation — Gizmodo
If Google sells this in the App Store for zero dollars, those millions of bucks Apple makes off of GPS app sales will likely disappear. It’s not for us to worry about until there’s no more GPS competition except Google, and we’re dependent on their pace of progress, but no competition is a bad thing. And it’s a little strange that Google’s search money is going to pay for a free map app that is competitive with stuff that costs $100 a year from full-time GPS makers like TomTom. Unfair is the word that comes to mind. But I can’t say I don’t want this app.
Agreed, on all counts. I wonder if Apple will try to play any differently with this than with other navigation apps since this is Google; does that make it any more “confusingly similar” to the iPhone’s Maps app (driven by Google Maps)? I think not, but I also wouldn’t be confused by a mobile Firefox (Fennec) or Google Voice.
It’s easy to see Google’s (and their users’) advantage in entering a competitive market this way, but yeah, I wouldn’t want to be their competitors either.
It does scare me how much data Google now owns, more in how they ditched their licensors so they could do something like this. But I want this app too.
So my AT&T contract is up this month and I’m considering all my options for my next PDA. My BlackBerry has been slowly dying on me, and I’ve not been happy with it.
It’s probably no surprise that I’m a big fan of Android—it is produced by Google — so ideally I’d get an Android device next.
However, I’m not terribly inclined to switch to T‑Mobile; their network is smaller and not as robust in all locations. And the G1 leaves a lot to be desired, so I’d rather wait for the next iteration. But how long will that be? Hard to say, though they may have a new, awesome device soon, so it may be worth waiting.
I had also mentioned that AT&T would likely be producing Android devices, but that dynamic seems to have changed somewhat: I suppose because of their ties with Apple and the iPhone, they’re not keen to produce any competing devices currently. And I can understand that, though it’s unfortunate.
It does seem like I’d be joining an active community though.
An iPhone would be a solid choice, and I certainly think the devices deserves (most of) the acclaim it’s been getting, but I’m not switching from one proprietary mobile device to another. Even if it is Apple. I’m also not impressed with the inability to run background applications, and while jailbreaking the phone would open up a lot of extra functionality, I’m not inclined to do that. I don’t want to support Apple by buying their device if I don’t actually support how they design their software.
So my two choices feel like this: Get an iPhone (and possibly jailbreak it) or switch to T‑Mobile if/when they release a second (slicker-than-G1) device.
Are there other choices? Which do you think I should do?