Apple(s aapl) Maps has a new driver behind the wheel of development and he’s actually from Amazon(s amzn). Benoit Dupin, previously the Vice President of Amazon A9?s Search team, has traveled to Apple as the company looks to improve its mapping software, reports 9to5 Mac.
While mapping information and visuals play an important part of any mapping program, so too does search and the ability to index huge amounts of useful map data. Points of interest, real-time traffic information, preferred routes and more are all part of a useful map app and that’s likely where Dupin comes in.
Amazon’s A9 search technology sifts through vast numbers of products on Amazon’s retail site, for example. Finding the right music in Amazon’s MP3 player or the best content in Amazon Instant Video are two other illustrations of how important consumer search is. And that’s something that Apple Maps could use help with. I’ve often struggled with the app when looking for a specific place of business or a nearby landmark that Google Maps finds easily.
I suspect that Dupin’s expertise will first appear in Apple Maps but could then filter through other Apple software and cloud services. If there’s been an Achilles Heel in Apple’s overall strategy it has been the company’s reliance on Google(s goog) for search and mapping expertise. That started to change with Apple’s own Maps app, although it hit some snags in the early stages. Adding Dupin simply solidifies Apple’s approach of going it alone with Maps and search.