Google Won’t Rescue Stranded iOS 6 Users

Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) won’t be coming to the rescue of iOS 6 users who miss its Maps service, at least not any time soon, according to executive chairman Eric Schmidt. His company has no intention to develop a dedicated app of its Maps service for iOS 6, Schmidt said at a Tokyo press event on Tuesday.

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With its latest iOS update, Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) replaces the once built-in Google Maps service with its own app, produced in-house, which debuted last week to wide criticism. Despite Apple’s 200-plus updates, most of them for the better, iOS users and the media have been focusing on its biggest misstep — the premature launch of its nascent maps service, powered by Dutch navigation equipment and digital map maker TomTom NV’s data. Despite its teaming with a seeming expert in the GPS arena, Apple’s service has a number of flaws and geographic errors.

But Google won’t be taking advantage of the backlash to weasel its way back on to Apple products. “We think it would have been better if they had kept ours,” Reuters reported Schmidt saying. “But what do I know?”

“What were we going to do, force them not to change their mind? It’s their call.”

It seems blood is thicker than water, and there’s been a lot of bad blood between the two tech giants. Google’s Android is the dominant operating system in the global smartphone market, and powers phones produced by numerous Apple competitors, among them Samsung, which has been locked in battle with Apple over supposed patent infringement. Apple, on the other hand, produces the single most-popular smartphone, but continues to face heavy competition from Android-based devices.

Apple’s break with Google was swift but incomplete. iOS 6 does away with Google Maps as well as YouTube, but Safari searches are still powered by Google results, for now anyway. Apple’s decision to remove Maps and YouTube has caused concerns that the company may remove Google search as well.

“I’m not doing any predictions. We want them to be our partner. We welcome that. I’m not going to speculate at all what they’re going to do. They can answer that question as they see fit,” Schmidt told Reuters.

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