By Khurram Aziz | Nov 15, 2012 09:21 AM EST
Nokia has joined Apple and Google in bringing a new mapping service to the iOS and Android as well as Windows Phone 8.
The Finnish company said it will be releasing the 'Here' app in the coming weeks and says that it's "the first location cloud to deliver the world's best maps and location experiences across multiple screens and operating systems."
"People want great maps, and with Here we can bring together Nokia's location offering to deliver people a better way to explore, discover and share their world," said Nokia President and CEO Stephen Elop. "Additionally, with Here we can extend our 20 years of location expertise to new devices and operating systems that reach beyond Nokia. As a result, we believe that more people benefit from and contribute to our leading mapping and location service."
The company says the mapping service will be part of its core business moving forward and uses the expertise it gained with its acquisition of GPS company Navteq for $8.1 billion in 2007.
The smartphone maker already has Nokia Maps on some of its devices as well as on Amazon's Kindle tablets, Yahoo services including Flickr and Garmin in-car satellite navigation systems.
The company hopes to avoid Apple's mistakes when it launched its Maps app in September 2012 for its latest iPhone.
Apple's program led to widespread criticism for its lack of features, such as those similar to Google's Street View, and the widespread errors it contained. These included marking an entire city as a hospital, misclassifying a nursery as an airport and identifying certain locations miles away from where they actually were.
Apple's chief executive Tim Cook issued an apology and, in a letter posted to Apple's home page, he suggested that users create a web app for either Nokia or Google's maps.
Nokia has responded by targeting the iPhone and iPad directly, which will be the first devices to get a native Here app when the application launches.
Based on HTML5, the map will include offline capabilities, voice-guided walk navigation and public transport directions.
Nokia also announced that it was buying Berkley-based firm, Earthmine, which uses sensor-equipped cars to create 3D street-level views similar to the technology Google used to create its Street View panoramas.
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