If there’s one thing Apple wants to avoid with the release of iOS 7, it’s another scandal anywhere approaching the mess it faced last year over issues with quality in the new post-Google Maps. In the weeks that followed, as Apple tried to clean things up for itself, it advised dissatisfied iOS users to check out some other apps to help fill in the gaps left by Apple’s Maps. One of those was from a company called Embark Inc., and today word arrives that Apple has gone ahead and acquired it.
Embark’s claim to fame is its ability to deliver apps focused on transit data – for all iOS 6 Maps tried to do with generating walking or driving directions, it came up short for urban users interested in making public transit a main part of how they get around.
This isn’t the first company dealing with transit data that Apple has brought under its wing, and all this activity seems to point to a growing focus with this kind of route planning in future versions of Maps. With iOS 7 nearly ready to go GM, we wouldn’t count on seeing any new Embark stuff straight away, but it’s highly likely that’s where Maps will be heading in the months to follow.