Waze bakes in one-tap Facebook Event integration
Facebook’s talks to acquire Waze have reportedly fallen apart, but that hasn’t stopped the Israel-founded start-up from baking more Facebook features into its apps for Android and iOS.
On Thursday, Waze announced version 3.7 of its popular navigation service, with Facebook Events integration being the star of the update show. The app refresh offers one-tap navigation to parties, gallery openings, or whatever else you’re planning through the world’s largest social network.
Waze says it has big plans for helping you get where you want to go without worrying about addresses. “One-tap navigation to Facebook Events is only the start. Drivers will enjoy much more in upcoming versions soon," Waze marketing chief Yael Elish said in a statement.
The new features indeed sound like they will be fairly helpful for Facebook Event users.
After you link Waze to your Facebook account, any event you RSVP’d to will appear in your one-tap navigation list in Waze up to 48 hours before the start time. If the person running the event hasn’t entered an address, you can use Waze to enter it yourself and the address will automatically be shared with other Waze users who are also attending. And as you’re driving to the event, you can use Waze’s previously released social features to see your Facebook friends en route to the event and how close they are to arriving.
Beyond Facebook Events integration, the new version of Waze also offers road alert pop-ups and local offers that take up less space on the screen. You can also swipe through all local offers and road alerts when you’re stopped at a light or parked.
Waze goes around the block
Waze has been a hot topic in recent months, as the company has reportedly been in acquisition talks with several major technology companies for an asking price around $1 billion.
Despite reports that Facebook was close to acquiring Waze, AllThingsD reported on Wednesday that the talks fell apart. A big sticking point was Waze’s insistence to maintain its development offices in Israel, while Facebook wanted to fold Waze staff into its Menlo Park campus, according to AllThingsD. During the D11 conference on Wednesday, Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg said mapping for Facebook was a “ non-goal,” because the company was focused on other projects.
Beyond Facebook, Google is reportedly in the running to acquire Waze. Meanwhile Apple CEO Tim Cook on Tuesday, also during D11, denied that Apple tried to acquire Waze. Rumors about an Apple acquisition surfaced in January.