You may be able to explore Apple’s upcoming mapping solution from the comfort of your MacBook Air or Retina-equipped Pro. Code discovered in the company’s iOS 6 beta, citing an Intel-based graphics chipset reference, suggests the in-house alternative to Google Maps will occupy nearly all of Apple’s product lineup, though it’s unclear in what capacity.
The possibility, if anything, could mean that Apple may be looking to integrate its mapping application with core apps — iPhoto comes to mind — in Mountain Lion, which is the company’s next big desktop OS. Or, perhaps on a grander scale, Apple could be looking for yet another way to combine the traditional computer experience with its mobile offerings, and then implement its iCloud syncing. Imagine looking up directions on your desktop, and then syncing them to your device once you head out on your journey.
However, according to an update on MacRumors, “it is possible that the references are merely addressing functionality of the simulator to allow [a] developer to test their apps without an actual device.” I.e. we may see nothing in the way of Maps hit OS X at all.
When Apple’s new Maps hits in iOS 6, the in-house solution will introduce an interactive 3D experience, turn-by-turn directions, real-time traffic info, and Yelp integration for local search.