At the beginning of this year, social GPS app Waze was the rumored target of an Apple acquisition. Had the linkup happened, it would have been a rare case of the Cupertino company acquiring a startup. But, as it turns out, there wasn’t a deal, even though Waze is a data partner for Apple’s mapping software. January might not have started out with as huge a bang for Waze as some people had hoped, but the company’s 2012 roundup shows it still had a pretty good year.
Waze grew rapidly in 2012, hitting a milestone of 20 million users in July after doubling that number in six months. In total, 36 million drivers in 110 countries shared 90 million user reports (including traffic and road condition alerts) last year. Users are an active bunch: a total of 65,000 Waze users made 500 million edits, updating Waze’s 1.7 million changes on the ground. Furthermore, about 70% of system-detected map problems were solved by Waze’s users over a 30-day period and almost all user-reported map problems were taken care of within a week.
The company attributed the growth of its user base to its improved map editor, as well as new features like its gas station editor, which was made available to international users in July after first launching in the U.S. Users added more than 50,000 gas stations on the map in the first month and real-time gas prices are now active in 20 countries.
It remains to be seen whether these number will help Waze land an M&A deal, if not with Apple, then maybe with a location-discovery service like Foursquare.
Waze is a social traffic & navigation app based on the world’s largest community of drivers sharing real time road info and contributing to the “common good” out there on the road. By simply driving around with Waze open users passively contribute traffic and other road data. Users can take a more active role by sharing road reports on accidents, police traps, or any other hazards along the way, helping to give other users in the area a ‘heads-up’...