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Apple acquires social mapping service Spotsetter to bolster Maps

Had some change left from Beats buyout
Mon Jun 09 2014, 11:36

Apple Maps on IOS 6APPLE APPARENTLY had some change left after its buyout of Beats Electronics, and has picked up geolocation recommendations service Spotsetter.

Techcrunch reports that Apple silently bought Spotsetter last week for an undisclosed sum, claiming the firm was after the technology and the company's two founders - ex-Google Maps engineer Stephen Tse and Johnny Lee.

Spotsetter uses big data to offer its users personalised, location based recommendations. The firm's app - which was available for iOS and Android until last week - combined data from friends recommendations and revenues, along with content from users' social networking accounts to offer recommendations, which it hoped made maps a more social experience.

For example, you could type the word "pizza" into Spotsetter and be presented with personalised results compiled about restaurants your friends rated highly and relevant, and well-reviewed places nearby.

Interestingly, Spotsetter, which last year claimed it had five million users and 40 million venues on hand, said in a blog post earlier this year that its recommendations service would "work like magic" on wearable devices, hinting that it might make an appearance on Apple's rumoured iWatch, which is tipped to debut in October.

As well as putting it into the iWatch, Apple likely will use Spotsetter to bolster its Maps application in order to finally challenge Google.

While Apple has yet to announce the acquisition, Lee posted a note on the Spotsetter website that seems to confirm the reported deal.

He wrote, "With fondest emotions, I'm announcing that we are closing down Spotsetter app. We still have big dreams for personalized search for places and look forward to seeing great progress in this area. Thank you everyone for your support over the past years!"

Lee has also updated his Linkedin profile to show that he now works for Apple.

We have contacted Apple for more information. µ


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