Apple has reportedly acquired Spotsetter, a social maps apps which will be used for revamping Apple maps in order to gain reputation against the mighty Google Maps. As of now, Spotsetter has been shut down its operation because of the new owner’s decision.
The terms of the deal was not disclosed and the acquisition was termed as a “low key” affair. Apple was also keen on the acquisition as the founders, Stephen Tse, a former Google Maps engineer and ex-Siemens consultant Johnny Lee, CTO at FitFriend will work for the company. The founders have changed their LinkedIn profile that they are working at Apple. Apple will also own the patents filed by the company relating to recommendation algorithms.
Last week, Lee said in a blog post:
“With fondest emotions, I’m announcing that we are closing down Spotsetter app. We still have big dreams for personalized search for places and look forward to seeing great progress in this area. Thank you everyone for your support over the past years.”
Spotsetter, a Silicon Valley startup was launched in 2012 and raised funds of $1.3 million in seed funding from Rahul Prakash, 2020 Ventures, Javelin Venture partners and AngelPad. According to reports, Spotsetter’s investors were “happy” with the deal. Apple will utilize the talent of Spotsetter’s internal team to develop Apple Maps which has been trying to compete with Google Maps.
Spotsetter is a social maps app similar to Foursquare for reading reviews, recommendations from friends and visting new places through the maps in the app. Spotsetter uses patent-pending recommendation algorithms compile user data from users Facebook, Twitter and Instagram accounts. Content will also be sourced from review sites and trusted sources. Last summer, the company mentioned that it had processed 5 million user profiles, 40 million venues and curated venue items from around the world. Along with Spotsetter’s technology, Apple will also use technology from WiFiSlam, Locationary, Embark, HopStop and Broadmap.
Apple decided to end the deal quickly after other companies became interested in acquiring Spotsetter. Spotsetter is expected to enter into wearables in the future as the company mentioned in its blog post that the platform would work on wearable devices “like magic”.
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