Google plans to release its much-awaited iOS Maps app tonight, according to sources familiar with the matter. (Update: Here it is.)
The app should be a welcome addition for many iPhone users, who have been unhappy with an Apple-made replacement.
The big reason for the change? Google had declined to provide voice navigation for Apple’s map app, among other features, after it had made significant investment in building out turn-by-turn directions for its own mapping products on Android and elsewhere.
Google did not immediately reply to a request for comment. A spokesperson for Apple declined to comment.
Meanwhile, Google execs such as Eric Schmidt had hinted that a replacement app was in the works but noted that it would have to be approved by Apple.
Just the fact that the Google Maps will be available for iOS doesn’t mean everyone will use it; the app will still be competing with Apple’s competitor, which is installed by default. But at least a few holdouts will be happy they can now finally upgrade to iOS 6.