It's official: Google buys Waze with an eye toward enhancing Maps

The terms of the deal, which had been expected for several days, were not disclosed

Waze is a crowdsourced mobile app for navigating traffic and roads.
Waze is a crowdsourced mobile app for navigating traffic and roads.
  • Waze is a crowdsourced mobile app for navigating traffic and roads.
  • Waze is a crowdsourced mobile app for navigating traffic and roads.
  • Waze is a crowdsourced mobile app for navigating traffic and roads.
View all images

Google is buying the crowdsourced mapping app developer Waze, in a move geared toward adding more real-time navigation tools to its own Maps software, the company announced Tuesday.

The terms of the deal were not disclosed, though early reports had said that the price could be as high as US$1.3 billion.

The Waze mobile app is designed to offer "smarter" real-time navigation by letting users share road reports on accidents, police checkpoints or other obstacles along driving routes.

The idea behind the app, which is available on a range of mobile devices, is to give people a "heads-up" of what's to come on the road. On its homepage, Waze claims to have 30 million users.

"We're excited about the prospect of enhancing Google Maps with some of the traffic update features provided by Waze and enhancing Waze with Google's search capabilities," said Brian McClendon, vice president, Geo at Google, in a blog post.

"We welcome [Waze] to Google and look forward to working with them in our ongoing effort to make a comprehensive, accurate and useful map of the world," he said.

The team at Google "share[s] our vision of a global mapping service, updated in real time by local communities, and wish to help us accelerate," said Waze CEO Noam Bardin, on the company's blog.

Waze's product development team will remain in Israel, Google said. The company also operates offices in Palo Alto, California, just a short distance from Google's headquarters in Mountain View, California.

"Nothing practical will change here at Waze," Bardin said. "We will maintain our community, brand, service and organization -- the community hierarchy, responsibilities and processes will remain the same."

Bardin acknowledged that Waze had considered "many options" before its acquisition by Google was finalized. Apple and Facebook were two such suitors, reportedly.

Waze's social traffic reporting features could indeed help to add more social functionality to Google's mapping software, some analysts have said.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments

Blog Posts

Sustainability trends brands can expect in 2020

​Marketers have made strides this year in sustainability with the number of brands rallying behind the Not Business As Usual alliance for action against climate change being a sign of the times. While sustainability efforts have gained momentum this year, 2020 is shaping up to be the year brands are really held accountable for their work in this area.

Ben King

CSR manager & sustainability expert, Finder

The trouble with Scotty from Marketing

As a Marketer, the ‘Scotty from Marketing’ meme troubles me.

Natalie Robinson

Director of marketing and communications, Melbourne Polytechnic

How do we break out of our marketing echo chambers?

Clients and agencies can get stuck into a particular way of behaving and viewing the world, but there are ways to break out of our marketing echo chamber.

Steve O'Farrell

Managing Partner, The Royals

It's a good idea. Customers really should control their data. Now I understand why it's important.

Elvin Huntsberry

Salesforce CMO: Modern marketers have an obligation to give customers control of their data

Read more

Instagram changes algorithms every time you get used to them. It really pisses me off. What else pisses me off? The fact that Instagram d...

Nickwood

Instagram loses the like in Australia; industry reacts positively

Read more

I tried www.analisa.io to see my Instagram Insight

Dina Rahmawati

7 marketing technology predictions for 2016

Read more

The saying is pretty tongue in cheek. It's not saying that marketers are bad people, nor that they don't take themselves seriously. There...

LYF Solutions

The trouble with Scotty from Marketing - The CMO view - CMO Australia

Read more

Given Scotty's failed track-record in the marketing realm the memes and the ridicule is very apt and is in no way a reflection on marketi...

denysf

The trouble with Scotty from Marketing - The CMO view - CMO Australia

Read more

Latest Podcast

More podcasts

Sign in