Lots of sites and apps use Google Maps -- paying dearly for those privileges -- but there have been some high-profile defections lately, including Apple and Foursquare. In a reaction to that, Saturday Google announced lower prices for websites and apps that use more than 25,000 downloads of its maps per day over a 90-day period.
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How low? The new rates are $.50 per 1,000 maps downloaded, according to The New York Times. That's a far cry from the previous tariff, which was eight times higher at $4. That means a site with 1 million pageviews per day would no longer have to pay $3,900 per day for the use of Google Maps -- now that price will be reduced to a mere $487.50.
There's been some tough timing for Google and its ubiquitous Maps lately. The company announced updates to its Google Maps earlier this month (June, 2012), including offline mapping for Android phones, Street View for nature trails and 3D Google Earth maps, all rolling out in the next few weeks. We saw a tour of that 3D feature, and found its flyover effect to be downright mesmerizing.
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Meanwhile, Apple has abandoned Google Maps for its own in-house mapping it plans to use in its upcoming iOS 6 this fall, and Foursquare jumped ship in favor of collaboratively developed OpenStreeetMaps. Perhaps these new bargain prices will keep Google Maps out of the red ink.
This story originally published on Mashable here.