Uber has acquired some technology from Microsoft’s Bing Maps, along with close to 100 employees. Its part of Uber’s efforts to build its own mapping technology, and possibly use this technology later for self driving cars. The team behind the technology will join Uber apart of this deal, and continue to work on building cutting edge map technology.
In a statement, a Microsoft spokesperson said the company made the decision to “transfer” its imagery acquisition operations as part of a broader effort “to focus the company’s efforts around our core business strategy.”
Over the past year, we have taken many actions to focus the company’s efforts around our core business strategy. In keeping with these efforts, we will no longer collect mapping imagery ourselves, and instead will continue to partner with premium content and imagery providers for underlying data while concentrating our resources on the core user experience. With this decision, we will transfer many of our imagery acquisition operations to Uber.
As Uber expands it wants to stop relying on Google, Apple, and Baidu for its mapping technology. The company was supposedly one of the companies who bid on Nokia Here Maps, and recently hired Google Maps former head. The core part of what make Uber amazing for its users is the maps where it show what Uber’s are near by. If the map technology is lacking or messed up it could affect the experience for the users. Which reflects poorly on Uber, but isn’t Uber’s fault. If the company is able to control the full end to end experience it can take control and make sure users are satisfied and fix bugs and issues quickly.
Tell us in the comments below what you think about Uber wanting to build its own mapping technology!