US: Apple’s patent for an improved maps application was recently published by the US Patent and Trademark Office. The “Interactive Map” application is an electronic map which displays several layers of information with highlighted landmarks and more.
Users can overlay certain types of information on the map by selecting more specific categories. These layers would be derived from other mapping services as well as third-party websites on the internet. Users can choose to see highways, retail stores, city parks, airports, even weather. Users can view these separately or all together in a composite view. What really sets this possible patent apart is that it allows users to fine-tune their views to make it easier to separate similar things like major highways and side streets on different layers.