Google Maps

Our Windows Phone-loving pals at WPCentral have found themselves in quite the pickle. First there's the whole to-do over YouTube and the fact that Google's not opening up its metadata to Windows Phone, so third-party apps can't search videos as well as we can on Android. (Or in the iOS YouTube app, for that matter.) Now they can't even use Google Maps. Not that there's been an official Windows Phone version of Google Maps -- nor do we really expect one anytime soon -- but for some reason pointing Internet Explorer to maps.google.com redirects back to the mobile verison of Google's home page.

Shenanigans? Or Gremlins? We're willing to bet it's just a hiccup and that Google's not shutting out Windows Phone from Google Maps, but it's an inconvenience, to say the least. And Gizmodo says this actually has been the case from the start. (Though that's apparently not true.) On the other hand, WPCentral's Daniel Rubino questions "why you would want to use Google’s less-than-awesome mapping service through a browser." With an attitude like that, pal, don't expect the boys and girls at Google to bend over backwards for you on a Friday.

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Reader comments

Oh noes! Google Maps isn't working on Windows Phone

47 Comments

Ha ha really nice.
What people are forgetting is that Google offers almost all of its products for free. And this products cost Google billions to make. That navigation you just used, its free! And people have the gull to complain when free things are taken away.
And for the record, when did MS become the good guy? MS has been running down companies that tried to stand up to them...

Well, thankfully we have Nokia Drive so, we don't have to worry about it. At least we get to use our maps offline and still find our destination.

Drive is great if you know the address of the place you're going. But if you're looking for a nearby shop/attraction/location it's rubbish. Can't even find major shopping centres here in Aus.

Funny how they are all up in arms, and if this is intentional I agree it's a childish move, but really, who uses google maps on their mobile browser?

It's as likely to be Microsoft's restrictions as it is to be Google's fault.

Nah, that's crazy talk, MS wouldn't do that, would they?

having seen the latest comscore numbers showing WP actually losing a percentage point, down to less then 3%, I doubt anyone at Google is going to rush to fix anything... MS say's Nokia's mapping is better, let them use that if they wish to cry over anything... ;-)

Nokia maps and Drive is definitely better than Google maps. And no ones crying (as someone here already said)... :)

The mobile version of Google Maps was built for webkit browsers only, IE is not a webkit browser. The mobile version has never worked with IE.

It did, I can confirm that myself, and there are reports as recent as an hour ago that I've read, that it still work on some localized Google maps sites (like maps.google.co.uk). Also, what are you saying? I am using Google maps on my desktop right now, IE is supported, I'm guessing you meant to say that IE mobile is not supported, but there are problems with that claim as well.

Now the issue that people are complaining about isn't that IE isn't supported, and therefore it's a crappy experience, the issue is that IE users on WP are being redirected from Google maps, they're not being allowed to use Google maps, something no other competing browser is facing.

You also cannot go to the desktop version of Google maps without getting redirected to the mobile search page. This is important because IE on WP and IE on Win 8/RT use the same rendering engine, some have said that perhaps it's the mobile maps site that has issues with the rendering engine, but this redirect from the desktop search site (which can be used), to the Google mobile search page when maps is selected from the desktop search page is reason for concern.

Daniel Rubino's potshot at Google maps is probably borne out of frustration, or from him not realizing that the mapping experience on bing/Nokia is not the same all over the world. Google maps is quite important in some places, and IF Google is doing this intentionally (the signs all point that way, people have tried out other things like changing browser user agent strings to show that it's specifically a browser identifying as a WP browser that is receiving this treatment), it's unbelievably sad, because it hurts users of these services first and foremost.

In an era where Microsoft is bringing a number of its apps to competing ecosystems, it's sad that Google is going out of it's way to hurt the competition (and remember, this isn't a Google maps app we're talking about, it's access to their maps website), saying that this is fine and even commendable because of Microsoft's past actions is just sad, behavior of that sort was wrong then, it would be wrong now.

edit: I may have made MS sound saintly in that last paragraph. I'm more annoyed at Google at the moment, but I'd just like to clarify, I don't think ANY of these companies are above reproach.

I saw that. He's probably just humoring his readers, they're pretty negative about Google over there.

Go to Windows Phone Central and tell them to "get over yourselves." Let me know how that goes lol. You'll be called everything but your name lmao. While I will admit that Android has fanboys (hell, what OS doesn't), I haven't seen fanboyism to the level that iOS users (Instagram, anyone?) or Windows Phone users (Youtube, Maps) have displayed. People take this shit way too personal.

EDIT: However, I will say that if this is intentional, it's not good for anyone. Windows Phone users shouldn't be punished because of corporate temper tantrums.

Y'know, I had thought iPhone fans were stupid, but the comments over at WPC are next level insane. "Remember how Google tried to deny the whole population of China?" Some of the stuff there is just bat-turd crazy.

+9000 I just read all of the comments over there. Those guys are f**kin insane. It's a GPS app, for cryin' out loud. Hell, I don't even primarily use Google Maps; I use a Magellan most of the time. They act as if Microsoft is suddenly their savior, fighting the evil that is Google. I like Android products, but there is no way that I would blindly swear allegiance to Google or any company, or blindly spread hatred about a company because of it's decisions regarding its products. Windows Phone users should just use Bing or Nokia maps, problem solved.

EDIT: I will say that I would probably be a little enraged myself if I were in their (Windows Phone users) shoes. Fanboyism has gotten the best of us at times. No one likes to see their brand of choice constantly attacked.

Microsoft/Windows makes phones ???
Now that's a funny one where do you come up with this stuff ???

Well, your "buddies" over at Windows Phone Central seem to know what's best for everybody lol

EDIT: That comment was a little too dickish. Damn, I'm already failing one of my New Year's resolutions lol

I think they are better off with Bing Maps & Nokia Maps.
I'm an android user & all , but I use Bing Maps or Google Maps.
I don't use maps that much, but I found that Bing Maps is more accurate & up to date than Google Maps

Ha! That's too bad! WP users can't complain...they have Bing and Nokia Maps to play with. If they want Google power...they should have gone to Android! They's what they get.

According to the LA Times, we can blame the Verge for starting this FUD fest - Google never supported IE and so there was nothing to break.

Native support for Google apps is one of the compelling reasons to get an android phone.

Use Bing if you want a windows phone.

-Suntan

microstop can't complain - thay've been denying Office for Linux users for years, and there even was a time when their web services worked only with IE.

Apple: We kicked Google maps off iOS and replaced it with our own inferior maps app.

Google: Okay Apple, here’s a shiny new map app that’s even better than Android.

Microsoft: Wait a minute, how about a map app for Windows Phone?

Google: Oh you, thanks for reminding us. Not only will you never get a map app but we’re breaking the browser functionality – bwahahaha!

Clever. Except Microsoft never asked for a map app. As a matter of fact they didn't ask for a YouTube app either.

Erm this has been the case for at least two weeks that I know of. At least it has here in Oz (a mate of mine has been complaining about it since he got his Lumia 2 weeks ago).