Apple Maps Street View incoming?

Apple could be squaring up to Google once again in the maps department. Let's hope things go a little smoother this time

A recently discovered patent suggests that Apple is working on a Google Street View rival.

The "3D position tracking for panoramic imagery navigation" patent outlines a user interface which uses your iDevice's sensors to navigate panoramic images.

Apple's new system will likely enable users to navigate virtual streets by tilting their iPhone or iPad in the direction of travel – which Apple reckons will make for a more fluid experience.

Bubbles of information pointing out places of interest can also be overlaid to offer extra information, and your specific location within your environment can be calculated with some fancy software and hardware magic.

The patent also mentions the ability to 'walk into' virtual buildings – and with Apple recently snapping up WiFiSlam for its indoor location tech, that feature could be on the cards sooner rather than later.

With Apple gearing up to launch iOS 7 at its WWDC event in June, Cupertino could be planning to put the Apple Maps debacle behind it once and for all.

[US Patent Office via Apple Insider]

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