Amazon Buying UpNext?
Amazon is reportedly acquiring map technology start-up UpNext, which has created 3D mapping apps for iOS and Android. The deal, which was reported by GigaOm, seems to suggest that Amazon is attempting to create its own mapping technology for successors to its Kindle Fire Tablet, to compete with Google Maps and Apple's expanded Maps app being introduced with the launch of iOS 6.
David Quin, head of consumer applications at navigation software developer ALK Technologies says it's another sign of growing demand for fully-featured mapping services. “This news reflects the continued importance that platform and device providers are placing on mapping services when it comes to smartphones and tablets,” says Quin. “As the traditional stand-alone device demises, these features are allowing mobile devices in to provide an equal, if not better, mapping service.”
UpNext's existing apps present rather impressive 3D vector-based maps for over 50 cities – you can see its iOS app in action in the video below: