A native maps app is one of most notable missing features in Amazon’s Kindle Fire. But Amazon may soon fill that void.
The online retailer is set to use Nokia’s maps technology in its upcoming Kindle Fire tablet, Reuters reports.
News of the move comes a month after Amazon purchased UpNext, a mapping startup that specializes in creating 3D maps of cities and stadiums. A Nokia partnership would allow Amazon to use its UpNext purchase to create its own native map application. This, in turn, will allow it to continue avoiding Google’s map technology.
But Amazon isn’t alone in its Google Maps avoidance. Apple made a similar move when it announced its own native Maps app for iOS 6. Likewise, by working with Nokia, Amazon will find itself a tad closer to Microsoft, which will use Nokia’s map technology in its Windows Phone 8 operating system.
But why the lack of Google love? It’s all about competition.
While the Kindle Fire runs on Android, it’s not at all an “Android tablet.” Amazon’s Kindle fork of Android is effectively its own platform, which gives Amazon almost complete control over what happens with it. That’s why Amazon created its own curated app store for the Kindle Fire: The company may be using Android, but that doesn’t make it Google’s ally.
Amazon is drawing the line in the sand, and is pushing Google to the far side of it. Its maps efforts are on the latest proof of that.