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Huawei to reveal its own mapping service this October

Huawei is planning to challenge Google by unveiling its own mapping system called Map Kit this October.
Huawei to reveal its own mapping service this October
File photo: World map inside Huawei's facility in Guangdong China

Map kit

After the event of the US government’s trade restrictions on Huawei, the Chinese tech giant is engineering a mapping service according to a report by China Daily. This obviously plays a part in the company’s strategy to compete with Google and Apple for worldwide dominance in the smartphone ecosystem.

As a warning, Huawei CEO Ren Zhengfei declared "If the U.S. government does not allow Google to provide the Android operating system," Ren told Sky News, "then the world may have a third operating system-and that is not in the best benefit or interests of the United States, allowing a little brother operating system into the world."

Is Map Kit capable enough to rival Google?

Map Kit appears to challenge Google Maps, but the designated use for this is for software developers. It means that navigation apps or ride ride-hailing services can utilize this mapping technology instead of developing their own from scratch. With that in mind, the millions of businesses and venues listed on Google Maps as well as the usability of its various functions will be a tremendous task.

According to a Huawei exec, this service will not only provide developers a street navigation system, but also a real-time traffic update for users. He also added that it will support augmented-reality mapping, but what it does and how it is integrated remains vague. This is probably related to Google’s AR walking directions.

History of map development shows that only Google had success since its launch of Google Maps in 2005 and still making investment efforts as it bought Waze in 2013. Apple tried to compete as it released its own maps in 2012 but failed to do so. It seems that Huawei should allocate a huge amount of investment to make this innovation a success since this service plays a significant role if the tech giant is to maintain its position in overseas markets. Huawei approximates that half of its mobile applications currently depend on location-based services. 

According to the source, the company will launch Map Kit in October, and it will cover 150 "countries and regions," and will be available in 40 languages.

Sources: The Verge, Forbes
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