Google has finally confirmed that it is buying the Israeli social mapping app Waze, with reports that $1bn has been paid for the purchase.
Both companies have said that Waze will continue to operate separately and in the same way as it does today – but with its real-time traffic logging functionality added to Google’s Maps, and with Google Search enhancing its existing product.
The app has only recently starting supporting local advertising, so this isn't the buyout of a money-making machine, but it certainly cements Google's position as the dominant mapping company. The points-based, community-driven app has more than 50m users worldwide spotting speed cameras, petrol stations and traffic jams, and this loyal grassroots have been assured that they will continue to be involved as the relationship develops.
As rumours circulated, linking the app company to everyone from Facebook, to Microsoft and Apple, it was clear that the Waze team was keen to stay in its home nation. Google has confirmed that the company will remain in Israel for now.