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Google Maps app returns to the iPhone

The new Google Maps iPhone app includes turn-by-turn directions, street-level photography of local neighborhoods and listings for more than 80 million businesses. The Google Maps iPhone app still lacks some of the mapping features available on Android phones, such as directions in malls and other buildings.

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Luc Vincent, Google Engineering Director, demonstrates how Google captures images in hard to reach places with Street View Trekker at the Google offices in San Francisco, Calif. The free Google Maps app is now available again on the iPhone.

REUTERS/Google/Handout

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Google Maps have found their way back to the iPhone.

The world's most popular online mapping system returned late Wednesday with the release of the Google Maps' iPhone app. The release comes nearly three months after Apple Inc. replaced Google Maps as the device's built-in navigation system and inserted its own maps into the latest version of its mobile operating system.

Apple's maps proved to be far inferior to Google's. The product's shoddiness prompted Apple CEO Tim Cook to issue a rare public apology and recommend that iPhone owners consider using Google maps through a mobile Web browser or seek other alternatives until his company could fix the problems. Cook also replaced the executive in charge of Apple's mobile operating system after the company's maps became a subject of widespread ridicule.

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