Up Until 2009 when they lost the spot to Google, MapQuest was the market leader in digital maps. The online mapping company is now looking to accentuate its value by adding personalization components to their online maps which will be customized to appeal to the consumers and to the brand. For this, they will be partnering with Mapbox, a map designer working with Pinterest and Foursquare among other popular companies.
According to the report released by the company, they are looking forward to bringing interactive and customizable maps. With this partnership, they are looking for an overhaul in user interface upgrades. The partnership will make the Denver based company maps more appealing to third party developers as well as direct consumers.
The company was acquired by AOL in 2000. In 2007, Google removed all MapQuest links from the top of search engine results page. They lost their glory to Google after the AOL executives failed to market the brand or improve their services. Recently, the executives realized the lost chance and started investing on the brand. They have regained 20 percent of the US market. This growth can be attributed to their release of a new mobile app offering commuting details, attractive business listings and a number of strong partnerships.
The mapping wars between Google, MapQuest and Apple are heating up. First off, Apple has declared to strengthen what they offer on maps. They will start by including local transit services information on their map platform, a feature they have been criticized for a long time for missing. Google and Apple are now the leaders in online mapping in the US and the world over. The challenge that MapQuest faces is that there are not many independent mapping providers in the market today. They join OpenStreetMap (which has also been working with Mapbox) since Uber recently acquired de Carta. By being close to the developer, they are hoping to make it to the top. However, it will be challenging to rebuild the brand and the traffic they once had.
Given that the online mapping company was not shuttered after AOL’s acquisition by Verizon, there is a lot expected from Verizon in regards to the growth of MapQuest. Perhaps a pre-installed MapQuest App on Verizon devices will lift the company to the projected heights. According to Eric Gundersen, the CEO of Mapbox, what the MapQuest team has produced thus far is impressive. He further states that they provide the building blocks and are eager to work with MapQuest to design the next generation online maps.