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korea google 520x245 Google+ Local for iOS will be pulled on August 7th after being integrated into Google Maps

Google+ Local for iOS, Google’s mobile search and discovery app, will cease to exist on August 7th, just over one year after it made its appearance on iPads and iPhones.

According to an email from the Mountview company (h/t Engadget), Google+ Local for iOS will no longer be available as a standalone app on mobile Apple devices. However, of the app’s entire functionality will be merged into the Explore feature in Google Maps.

Google+ Local for iOS, formerly known as Google Places, lets users voice search for nearby restaurants, check Zagat restaurant ratings, and read and post reviews of local establishments. The app was itself a rebranded version of Google Places.

According to the email, all user reviews and ratings will remain accessible via Google Maps and one’s Google+ profile.

Google+ Local for iOS isn’t the first location-oriented service that Google has phased out as it revamps its mapping and local search offerings. Two weeks ago the company stated that Latitude, its map-based location-sharing service, would retire on August 9th.

Earlier this year Google initiated a sizable overhaul of its Maps application, which included enhanced navigation, live traffic updates, the new Explore feature, and on the Apple front, improved visuals on the iPad. Last June the company acquired Waze, the Israeli social traffic and navigation app, for over $1 billion.

Image credit via Ji-Hwan Park/Getty Images

Google Maps

Poor Apple Maps. While we see very minor improvement from Apple’s year-old Maps application, Google continues to improve its world-class offering pretty rapidly. Why, Wednesday, in fact, Google launched an update to the Google Maps for iOS app, adding support for the iPad, indoor maps, and a slew of other features that were released with the recent Android Google Maps update. Google Maps 2.0 now fully supports the larger screen sizes of the iPad and iPad mini, as well as offering indoor maps with walking directions for transit stations, airports, malls and other large buildings. Past that, you’ll also notice that the Google Maps iOS app now offers better navigation with live traffic updates and incident reports. Meanwhile, Apple Maps still hasn’t figured out transit directions.

Read the full story at TechCrunch.

“Apple is going after people with experience working on Google Maps to develop its own product, according to a source with connections on both teams,” Darrell Etherington reports for TechCrunch.

“Using recruiters, Apple is pursuing a strategy of luring away Google Maps employees who helped develop the search giant’s product on contract, and many of those individuals seem eager to accept due in part to the opportunity Apple represents to build new product, instead of just doing ‘tedious updates’ on a largely complete platform,” Etherington reports. “Apple is actively looking for more talent to add to its team, according to recent job listings the company has posted. And while there’s a tough road ahead for Apple playing catch-up in this area, my source believes that the possibility of building a platform that truly competes with Google Maps is well within reach for Apple.”

Read more in the full article here.

Related article:
Why Apple pulled the plug on Google Maps – September 23, 2012

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