Waze, the newest addition to the map application market, is the subject of many recent headlines. A bidding war has started between Facebook and Google, both companies want to get their hands on this new mapping technology.
For Facebook, buying Waze would mean more opportunities to sell ads, but more importantly Waze would provide them with the technology they need to get better information and data about their users.
For Google, Waze will bring some much needed enhancements to the social side of its new maps application.
Waze was founded in Israel in 2007 but is headquartered in Silicon Valley. This cutting edge application uses GPS sensing technology. As you drive around this application is discretely determining your own speed and location so it can be applied to data from other Waze users. With this data Waze is able to create real time traffic updates and information on hold-ups and accidents. It can even tell you when you’re approaching police or which gas station on your route has the best prices. It’s a pretty remarkable little app with some huge marketing power; it’s easy to see why Google and Facebook are so eager to get their hands on it.
As of now it’s been said that Waze is looking for bidding to start around $1 billion, the end result remains to be seen. However, it was pretty clever on Waze’s part to start this bidding war, it can only increase their profit. One might expect to find Apple in the mix as well but according to Bloomberg Apple is “not currently” part of this bidding war. This quote taken straight from the Waze website does a fantastic job of summing up this cutting edge traffic application, “Imagine 30 million drivers out on the roads, working together towards a common goal: to outsmart traffic and get everyone the best route to work and back, every day.” All bidding and marketing opportunities aside, this may be one of the most useful and practical applications ever produced.