Amazon launches competitor for Google Maps

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Amazon Web Services announced that it is making a new service generally available. The service helps developers add location-based capabilities like package tracking to apps. Amazon location Service is a simple and cheap way to add location functionality to all kinds of apps.

All of this is done without compromising the security of the data or user privacy, according to Amazon. The service uses maps provided by Esri Global and Here Technologies Global, with additional capabilities implemented by Amazon on top of the maps.

For instance, there are tools to create software that can be used to track objects like packages being delivered to customers.

Additional capabilities

There is a geofencing capability built into the offering, to provide a way to track an object when it enters a location like a logistics center and warehouse. Amazon Location Service can also be built directly into apps so that a retailer could, for instance, add a map to a website or app that overlays the store locations for people to use to locate them more easily.

The service was introduced in preview in December and as Andre Dufuor, the General Manager of the service says, it is a promising candidate for use in location-based customer engagement.

Rivalry

The launch of Amazon Location Service is in direct competition with Google’s Maps platform, which is a service that can be used to integrate location data into apps. Amazon is also aiming at Microsoft’s Azure Maps, which is a similar service that adds maps for apps on Azure Cloud.

AWS Senior Developer Advocate Marcia Villbalba said that the licensing terms offered by Amazon are much friendlier. Amazon claims that this service does not allow third parties to use people’s location data for commercial purposes, unlike its competitors who do so.