According to a report from Bloomberg and an anonymous source from Apple Inc, the company is making efforts to rehaul their Maps service with the use of drones.
Apple applied for FAA approval to fly drones on September 21, 2015, and had their request approved on 22 March 2016. This can either point to a commercial drone venture by Apple, or an aid to help get more reliable data for their Maps service.
This new technique for obtaining map data on a large scale could assist them to take on their biggest competitor Google Maps. Apple will be consulting several data-collection and robotics experts to capture map data much quicker and more efficiently than the current van-mounted camera technique.
Apple’s map service will also encompass the interiors of large buildings for users to explore following the acquisition of the start-up companies Indoor.io and WiFiSlam. Both of these start-ups specialize in indoor mapping, which indicates that they want to expand their Maps service to include buildings and homes too.