Google Maps iPhone App Now Serving Ads


Looking for sushi in New York via the Google Maps iPhone app? Hope you like sifting through sponsored links, as Google Maps for the iPhone is now serving up sponsored links.

Obviously Google is in the business of ads, but what threw me off was that the sponsored link info bubble popped up by default right when I did the search (as seen in the screenshot below). Maps is obviously a free app, so I don’t have beef with some ads, but when using a mobile UI, where pixels are already hard to come by, popping up the info bubble by default and taking up precious screen real estate just seems bad form.


Hat tip: Ubergizmo


Brian James

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I’m typing in Sushi NYC and Sushi in NYC as a test and i’m NOT getting any sponsored links that pop up. What’s the fuss about?


YES! This is the feature I’ve been dying for forever!!!! Thanks Google for popping up sh!t on my phone when I block every goddam popup out of existence on all my other platforms.

real smooth, 10^100
keep it up. the only way to go is down doing this


Also agree – Maps is not free – it is within the purchase price because it’s part of the feature list. I’m seriously not grooving on Google pulling this.

Google was looking pretty good and maybe even able to play the “poor widdle Google” card against Apple’s recent “GoogleVoice Gate” app store nonsense. However, Google… this sux. Stop it.


I have to agree with sduck. Maps is not a free app, it’s an advertised feature of the device that we all paid (and pay) a lot of money for. If Maps is a free app, then so is Phone.


I guess the space on this web site taken up by adds is just not as precious.

Josh Pigford

Touche. But we never offered this site ad-free and it’s not a mobile UI. So you’re comparing apples to…somewhat different apples. :) Plus, Google’s Map ad is the equivalent of a pop-up ad in my book, and we most certainly don’t serve pop-up ads.


or maybe this move by Google is in response to Apple purchasing Placebase


That is really annoying. No wonder Apple bought their own mapping company.


Since when is maps a free app? I paid a lot of money for the phone which came with a maps app, which is presumable part of what I paid for.


When I type in “Sushi New York,” the sponsored pin doesn’t show up, and Sushi Yasuda Ltd is highlighted. When I type “Sushi NYC,” the sponsored pin shows up, but again, Sushi Yasuda Ltd is highlighted by default.


So that explains why last week while 1.5 hours from home my headlight died. I searched for “auto parts” and was shown all kinds of crap on the map that had nothing to do with auto parts. Thanks Google. Thanks for selling out.

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