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Google to Buy Waze for Over a Billion Dollars?

Last we heard, Facebook was thinking of buying GPS service Waze. Back in early may, word got out that the social networking giant was in talks to acquire Israeli start-up Waze Mobile for $800 million to $1 billion. Before that, Apple was rumored to be considering Waze for acquisition. In December of 2012, word on the street was that Apple could acquire Waze but these rumors were later branded completely fabricated. Now, it seems it's Google's turn for some Waze-related chatter.

According to the Wall Street Journal, Google is in talks to purchase Waze for over a billion dollars. The Journal cites a person familiar with the negotiations that says Google is looking to acquire Waze to boost its already strong position in the mapping market. Developed by Waze Mobile, the highly-popular Waze social GPS app features turn-by-turn navigation and is available on Android, iPhone, Symbian, Windows Mobile and BlackBerry. It recently won the Best Overall Mobile App award at Mobile World Congress 2013, is completely free and boasts nearly 50 million users. Waze uses satellite signals from users' smartphones to generate maps and traffic data, offering community-edited maps, traffic jams, road hazards, accidents and even speed traps – all supplied by other drivers in real time. The free service also helps users find the cheapest, closest gas stations near their current location whether it's at home or out-of-town.

The Wall Street Journal says the Google acquisition deal could be announced as early as this week and that Waze would remain a standalone application. WSJ sources say the app's most valuable data could be integrated with Google Maps. No word from Google or Waze on the accuracy of the report but we'll keep you posted on any news of the deal.

  • DjEaZy
    ... Google to Buy Waze for Over a Billion Dollars? NNNOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!
    Reply
  • Devoteicon
    What the hell is Waze?
    Reply
  • ddpruitt
    Waze isn't worth $.02.

    The location information is inaccurate (off by several miles in some cases), exiting a freeway makes a traffic jam, it promotes users that give inaccurate information ....

    I stopped using Waze after 2 weeks because a blank map is more useful.
    Reply
  • jaber2
    WTF?
    Reply
  • FunSurfer
    10944940 said:
    Waze isn't worth $.02.

    The location information is inaccurate (off by several miles in some cases), exiting a freeway makes a traffic jam, it promotes users that give inaccurate information ....

    I stopped using Waze after 2 weeks because a blank map is more useful.

    Waze probably needs more users to become more accurate... Best case scenario is all the cars on a certain road have smartphones that are using the application, which is definitely not the case now...

    Reply
  • fulle
    This is frustrating news for me, since Waze is my backup navigation app for when Google navigation is having issues.
    Reply
  • yorich
    10944940 said:
    Waze isn't worth $.02.

    The location information is inaccurate (off by several miles in some cases), exiting a freeway makes a traffic jam, it promotes users that give inaccurate information ....

    I stopped using Waze after 2 weeks because a blank map is more useful.

    You must live out in the boonies. Here in the bay area, CA, Waze has been the most accurate (with a few exceptions) mapping application yet. I used to use google, but found that it's ETA, as well as traffic information was off. Waze on the other hand, has been I'd say 95% accurate. Speed trap? I've been correctly notified 85+% of the time (few times cop wasn't there, but better safe than sorry). Traffic? I hit the slow down exactly where Waze says it is. ETA? Accurate to within 1 or 2 minutes every time I use it.

    Waze has been the most accurate tool I've come across yet, so you must live somewhere where NOBODY uses it or edits the map.
    Reply
  • megiv
    Waze is doing great is certain places. In other places it just lacks user capacity, but in the current growth rate I wouldn't be worried about it.
    Reply
  • Rhinofart
    Shouldn't these drivers be concentrating on driving instead of updating their data on a smart phone? Unless this Waze updates automatically (your speed, position, etc)
    Reply
  • yorich
    10945573 said:
    Shouldn't these drivers be concentrating on driving instead of updating their data on a smart phone? Unless this Waze updates automatically (your speed, position, etc)

    Waze does it automatically. It detects if you're in traffic (asks you to confirm), and in the recent updates they've added a "gesture" detection ability where you can wave your hand in front of the camera and then dictate an update "Heavy traffic", "Road Hazard", "Police Hidden", etc. Thus making it safer to update other drivers.
    Reply