Apple is rebuilding the mapping application on its iPhones from the ground up with its own dataset gathered by camera-and-LIDAR-equipped trucks, satellite imagery, and anonymized data from millions of iPhone users.
Until today, Apple Maps were using data provided by Amsterdam-based TomTom NV. Apple said that the new Maps, which will start the rollout this fall for the Northern California territory, will continue to use data from TomTom, enhanced with data gathered by its own fleet of sensor-equipped vans and with anonymous data from iPhone users that choose to share it.
The new Maps will be more accurate, more reliable and more rapidly updated , since they will use data from future iPhones, which are said to have location data accurate to less than one meter (GNSS).
Apple plans to use a variety of techniques, including segmentation, to pull location data from hundreds of millions of iPhones without violating users' privacy.
Adding to maps a layer of Augmented Reality will also result in new experiences, from measuring objects to playing multiplayer games. You could ask your phone for recommendations of a good place to get lunch nearby, and when you hold up your phone, restaurant rating cards are superimposed over the real world, each one precisely located right where the restaurants are. Or even get directions with data superimposed onto the real world.