Is Google now blocking Windows Phone from using Google Maps?

We’re not sure if this is just a temporary error or something more nefarious but Google appears to have changed something whereby Windows Phone users are now blocked when trying to access maps.google.com.

Granted, it’s not clear why you would want to use Google’s less-than-awesome mapping service through a browser, but humor us for a second. The move appears to be a continued approach to lockout all Google services from those who adopted Windows Phones. Or it’s just poor service.

We were able to verify on our Windows Phones that when going to maps.google.com we are redirected to www.google.com/m for mobile, regardless of IE10’s settings i.e. Desktop mode. Reports suggest that maps.google.co.uk still works for some folks but for us that too redirects, making this an in-motion change that is evidently occurring worldwide.

We were also able to confirm that on the iPhone users are prompted to download the Google Maps app (must be nice) but they can bypass that redirect and still successfully access maps.google.com if the user so chooses. Android users, trying various browsers, also have no problems making this a unique issue with Windows Phones only.

From a comment on this article by gmlongo:

"It is definitely on purpose.  If you change the user agent in Firefox (using User Agent Switcher) to "Mozilla/5.0 (compatible; MSIE 10.0; Windows Phone 8.0; Trident/6.0; ARM; Touch; IEMobile/10.0", you get redirected to the Google home page. But if you set the user agent to "Mozilla/5.0 (compatible; MSIE 10.0; Windows Phne 8.0; Trident/6.0; ARM; Touch; IEMobile/10.0" (notice I intentionally misspelled Windows Phone), the maps.google.com page comes up just fine. In other words, the only way I was able to get it to redirect is to have Windows Phone in the user agent string.  So something on Google's side is keying off the user agent for windows phone"

Google's continued assault on Windows Phone users

Google has famously proclaimed that they will not make apps for Windows Phone users to access their services and now they are evidently looking to deny any usage whatsoever. First it was their dropping of Exchange ActiveSync (EAS) occurring later this month, which will prevent users from creating new accounts on their phones and syncing Gmail contacts and calendar, and then there was the YouTube incident.

That second complaint goes back to 2011 when Microsoft alleged that Google was not allowing access to YouTube metadata to the company, preventing Microsoft from releasing a high quality YouTube app for Windows Phone. Microsoft brought up the grievance again this week because it still has not been resolved, with Microsoft going so far as to allege Google is decisively blocking a “first rate” YouTube experience on Windows Phone.

Malevolent or just idiocy?

So the big question here is this part of the continued Google attack on Windows Phone users or just shoddy programming resulting in a bad redirect? We’re not too sure at this point and we’ll have to wait a few days to see if anything changes. It does certainly seem suspect though with the current back and forth between the two internet juggernauts, it only affecting Windows Phone browsers and with Google recently being “cleared” by the FTC of any egregious anti-competitive behavior.

We suppose if you were so inclined to use Google Maps you could just go ahead and use the excellent app gMaps Pro but outside of some really unique situations, we can’t see why you would prefer it over Bing or Nokia Maps.

In conclusion, we have to ask the question: is it time to actively boycott Google? We’re assuming a lot of you have made the move off of their ad-laden services but is it time to step it up a notch and go offensive with individual anti-Google campaigns? Perhaps.

via: WMPU



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jmshub says:

That is interesting. That definitely goes a long way towards it looking like (yet another) an intentional attack on Microsoft. How this kind of behavior isn't picked up by the DOJ or FTC is beyond me.

gmlongo says:

The reason I tried this is because I figured it could be possible that an unknown user agent would force the redirect, but when I made the user agent invalid, maps.google.com displayed just fine.  I could see how a coding mistake on google's part could cause unknown user agents to redirect, but in this case, they are clearly recognizing the agent, and redirecting.

jaspercook says:

Has anyone else repro'd this? That's pretty ridiculous - I can't think of any legit reason for this to happen, but then I'm a tad ignorant about what actually happens when you change the user agent--it doesn't change he browser functionality, does it?
I'm getting really sick of this fight between M$ and Google.
Thanks for the heads up, gmlongo.

gmlongo says:

The user agent is really just a string of text that gets passed by the browser to the website to identify which browser is currently requesting the page.  It doesn't affect the browser functionality, but the website that is processing the request can use the user agent to offer a different style sheet for example.  Or in the case of maps.google.com, redirect the user all together.

jaspercook says:

Thanks for the explanation, and again, nice work noticing this. Looks like (according to another post on WPCentral) it's been confirmed by Google that this behavior was intentional. Ugh.

AneticsUK says:

Why dont we all email google support asking them to re-clarify they mission statement?

lubbalots says:

Ask Eric Schmidt. He knows google's mission very well.

well I have a 920 and Nokia maps...so...yawn.

Depatter says:

How about a windows update that blocks the use of google services...I bet a solution might be found pretty quick if that were to happen. Even if Google sued, it could take years to work itself out in court. The execs at Msft must have never heard of leverage.

lubbalots says:

Can't beat MS in court, might as well use shady tactics.

Its funny, both YouTube and google maps both work fine on both desktop version and mobile version (UK) however this is the first time I've tried to open either of these two websites in over a year! Bothered.....no.

I think the main issue is Microsoft made such a huge splash when Windows 7 seemed to convince the overall market that Microsoft finally got their shit together and Microsoft did such a great job with Bing and possibly the notion Bing doesn't allow advertisers to be first in search queries might have turned some heat on Google. Then there is Windows 8 and Windows 8 tablets and Phones! I am just guessing possibly Googles CEO and Marketing agents are worried because it all ties together and a great self advertising scheme possibly something Google cannot compete with since almost every home computer has possibility opportunity to be upgraded to Windows 8 for $40 USD! I doubt the Chrome books are seeing much market share.. I see it Android isn't much without the OEM's and thanks to Apple Samsung probably feels like it might cause them more trouble later on... Hopefully Apple and Samsung are done... I don't hate Google or Android just Google needs to save face and break bread with Microsoft!

jlynnm350z says:

Sorry for language but banana YOU GOOGLE AND THE HORSE YOU RODE IN ON!!

Vexxed says:

Don't care since I won't use Google products. That sentiment seems to be spreading albeit slowly

iceman9899 says:

maps.google.co.uk works fine for me in desktop mode!

PhilR8 says:

Same for me.  In fact, it worked far better than I thought it would.  It almost works perfectly.

Jerry_K says:

I think - We don't need Google anymore. We have Bing, a super cool and super good search site. We have Bing- or Nokia Maps. Better Maps than Google has. So, WE DONT NEED HELL-GOOGLE

Luminatic says:

For some countries, Bing doesn't work very well for internet searches (still in beta where I live). I hope MS gets its act together and takes care of ALL its customers.

mmoses1978 says:

Hope this is just an error but it seems Google is afraid of competition.

vemulasri says:

One thing if they dont develop an app or give access. If they restrict the maps itself then i do not think that will go well with google through the antitrust.  They even complained about having IE as the default on windows 8.  So let's see how it goes. I really wish MS stops all these cool apps on androids starting now and see how it goes for google.  

TheMendez93 says:

If this is true, then its a sad day for technology. The game of creating technology is to create innovations that better the competition, so your products gets the plaudits. Microsoft has truly innovated with Windows Phone, and should get the plaudits & sales it deserves. But how can this be achieved when google deny them the sites & tools that are VITAL for a mobile platform too succeed? Its wrong and unfair

"Doh't be evil" my ass.... One more reason why I'm glad I left Google behind and embraced Windows Phone.
F*ck Google.

cowboy620 says:

Bing works better I think. The Nokia city lens is awesome. Love my red 920. Google sucks lately I've been posting all my windows 8 wp8 bids to fb works better for me google can kiss my _______!

Mafiatounes says:

I am in a transition from Gmail to Outlook, from YouTube to Vimeo and Dailymotion, still need a similar service like Google Reader without the Gmail account..

dandrayan says:

Has anybody else tried that redirected page before pulling out the torches and pitchforks?  I was redirected on my Lumia 920, but I was still able to enter a search and get a static mini-map:
If you want a rich experience, you should be using the built-in Bing, Bing Maps, Nokia Maps, or Local Scout on your Windows Phone anyway.

grol4 says:

That is just a search, its not using maps.
You can try the same thing on a desktop, so I will keep wielding my torch and pitchfork, thank you very much.

vinscg says:

just closed all google services i ad , waiting a few for my gmail... closing soon! 

lambacini says:

No problem, use bing search, hotmail nokia maps or bing maps (better than google maps).

'Outside of some really unique situations?' 
Please, there is a big world outside the United States(yep, it's true, USA != world) where Bing maps are hopeless. So it's not a wise decision by Google to block web access to their maps.

lmoritz says:

Yes, it is time to actively boycott Google. Not just individual efforts, but someone needs to organize something more formal. A clear message needs to be sent.

LOL you don't need to boycott Google, Google is making it very easy for Windows Phone users to do that, whether they like it or not :p

NAMISH says:

It's time for Microsoft to stop playing nice and work on a major competitor for YouTube...

Google Maps has never worked on Internet Explorer browsers people lol do a little research. Google Maps through mobile browsers is based off web-kit, which the aging Internet Explorer is not lol http://m.gizmodo.com/5973295/google-maps-has-never-been-accessible-on-mo...

simphf says:

Gizmodo said something bad about IE. WOW, MIND BLOWN.

You sound insane. Google maps has always worked in IE. Lol

gmlongo says:

Works on desktop IE since forever...and Firefox...and Opera. All of which are NOT WebKit browsers.

gbbg says:

And it since has been retracted by the author himself.

TechManiac says:

WP7.5 no access with both IE profiles :O tragic

mazzmoney95 says:

If Android owned less then 3 percent of the market do you think Microsoft would have skydive and all their other apps on the Play Store? If you do, then you think too highly of microsoft. All I'm saying is that if the roles were reversed, Microsoft would be just as bad as Google. 

gmlongo says:

This is NOT an app we are discussing This is a website that is explicitly blocking windows phone based on the user agent. There is a big difference.

Ticomfreak says:

I would if Google already made the apps and just needed an "okay" to release it.

simphf says:

Everyone should get on twitter, ask why Google is EVIL or whatever and use the hash tag #googleisevil. The news sites love twitter because they don't need to do any work.

lubbalots says:

I'm not entirely sure why WP users aren't taking advantage of ms's ecosystem. Everything a WP user needs is in their hands! Maps and navigation, seriously, how often do you use that? Gmail, what does Gmail have that outlook doesn't? I'm I lost or not getting with the program? Someone help enlighten me!

Bing maps are terrible outside the United States. 
And you don't just switch emails like that, especially if someone has been a long time Gmail user, which millions of people are. Take me for example, I've my Gmail account setup as my login in God knows how many websites, everyone I know knows my Gmail address and I've been using it for nearly 10 years now. I can't just 'switch' to outlook. It's not possible no matter what stop-gap solution you present.

Bearach says:

It is possible to switch from Gmail to Outlook. It just would take you a lot of effort, and time.

Well, all you would do is forward your google email to outlook

lubbalots says:

Can't say much about maps since I hardly use. Bing seems to work fine for me. For mail, its more or less a matter of convenience. Here's what I say, you're using WP, join the family. Start taking advantage. You won't regret.

Joe Hall says:

I cant help you there ... I am of the same mind as you.

zigzagr63 says:

I don't remember how long it was that I had my Gmail account. I was a beta tester for them about a year or two before Gmail went public. So last year I had enough of Google and closed every account with them. Went to all the sites I was concerned about, updated them and never looked back. It's not difficult to change you just have to want to change.

Luminatic says:

My reason for not using bing instead of google as  a internet search tool so far:
- Bing still in beta in my country
- Standard bing search results cannot be filtered by date (I use this option a lot). It can be done when searching for news only, but then I lose the ability of searching for sites of more than one language
- Bing search results just not as good as google's
Bing might world well for you, in your part of the world, but it sure as hell doesn't in other parts of the world. And as long as Microsofts has customers in parts of the world where bing (or any other MS tools) are not working well, there will always be Microsoft customers using competitors tools.
Sigh ... I don't know why some people S T I L L think if something works for them, it MUST be working for all people. Believe me, this is just not the case.
BTW, I neither use bing maps nor google maps, I'm happy with nokia maps. I also don't use gmail as I have no reason to do so (only had a gmail account because I have used an android phone before).
Edit:  Should have been an answer to the post above.

It is a full conscious move from Google... As I've read this, I also recalled that Google maps used to work on my Zune HD; but when I tried to access today, it also got redirected. It wouldn't surprise me if Google PR says this day or tomorrow that it was in the "best interest of giving users a full experience" or some similar crap

Bing Maps >Google Maps >Nokia Maps

rodneyej says:

Microsoft should block Google from W7-8! That would really bite their ass.. Sure 90% of the world would go nutz at first, but once they saw the price for a Mac, and started to use Bing, in time they would forget all about Google. Trust me, the world would move on. If Google can block their services from a OS, then MS should be able to block its OS from their services! Seriously, if this were to happen MS would rule the entire computer landscape desktop, and mobile.

This is stupid. I have faith in Microsoft to do the right thing, though.

Alcarnor14 says:

And if Microsoft did that, they'd get in more hot water than Google would, given Windows 90% (roughly) market share on computers (laptops/desktops). MS would soon find it didn't rule anything at all with all the attention they'd get from the FTC and Justice Dept.
They've already gotten in hot water over abusing their monopoly power and would not want to do so again, especially since repeat behavior would trigger rather more substantial penalties.

SergeMcG says:

Maps? Better Nokia's.
Yes, maps doesn't work here in the UK. Unbelievable how open they are! Time to switch away from all their apps and services. 

Long Syntax says:

Its been said before, but just remove the ability for Google to to run in IE and disallow any google program from running in windows.
There'll be a loud noise from the google camp, Things will have to be settled then.

dkp23 says:

I've never tried accessing google maps on browser using my focus s, 900, and 920, not sure why you would need to do with map apps on the phone.  gmaps on browser would be kind of difficult. 

Joe Hall says:

I use Bing maps on my Omnia 7, as soon as I get my Lumia 920 I will use bing and Nokia maps. If Scroogle want to stop .. thats fine by me, but you cant stop supping me, because I stoped useing you.
The only place I still use google is on a PC, and thats 95% bing search, and 5% Google Search, 95% bing maps, and 5% google Maps, Google Earth, and YouTube.
If I was 100% off Google it would hurt their add income more than it would hurt me.

zigzagr63 says:

I never use google for anything at all but just for the heck I went to the mapping website with no problems and did a search as well. Please don't make any one go to a Google site again. HaHa

KingCrimson says:

I so wish I decouple myself from Gmail & Chrome. Can Firefox replace Chrome's ability to sync bookmarks, extensions and settings as well as sign into multiple accounts?

wiesi says:

Yes ff can sync.

sanien says:

Yeah and it is better than the crap that is Chrome.

riffraff67 says:

I've never been able to access Google Maps via IE on my Lumia 920, desktop mode or not. I've presumed this was a normal thing, although why I would think that does now seem ridiculous.

Bilal_Fakih says:

Strange!! It worked on my PC using IE 10, also since im using Windows 8 on my PC, i opend Google maps using its application "Google" then clicked on Apps, then maps and it worked well. Also i wrote the website of maps.google.com on the google apps and it worked fine. But on my phone it didnt work......
If google is blocking gmaps and maybe all of its services, then i think Microsoft should do too. Block Skype on Andriod and lets see how it wil go. Mircosoft is getting beaten up from google every few days...not cool

andrewq911 says:

Anybody down for a complete boycott against google?

Odog4ever says:

When Youtube stops having a monopoly on internet video I'll be right there with you but alas... :(

cedarlog says:

im already doing it :P

bbqrooster says:

We need to do a smart boycott. You should only use their services that'll bleed Google money. For example, use Gmail for junk mail, sign up for all kind of SPAM and don't clean your mail box. Use Youtube but block all advertising. Use Google voice but don't give them a red cent.

sixium says:

LOL, that's what I already do =)
I have 20 Gmail accounts that I use when I encounter "Enter Email address for coupon code" situations, and they are all filled with gigs of spam. And I haven't seen an ad on Youtube for ages thanks to Adblock+.

deloa84 says:

Well screw it I will close my Google account for good.... Shame on you Google... Bastards.

gevabar1 says:

I don't care, I have been using Bing and its better so far, YouTube is all I care about

mrdeezus says:

This is whay MS should not allow office on android or ios. Xbox as well should be locked to thier ecosystem, its not right its just the way it is. At least not allow thier properties on android. period.

forked says:

This is from Google's About page.  This is their mission statement:
"Google’s mission is to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful." 
What tools.  I really can't stand Google.  I'm THIS close to being able to close my google account.  And I won't look back.

Its taking a long time to move all 11,000 emails off of Google to Outlook but it is worth it. Google is out to make war. No use to be caught in the middle, as much as I can help it.

usr7jkg2 says:

I'm owning a Lumia 920 and have just done a little Wireshark session: when browsing to maps.google.com (as well as www.google.com), the browser uses the User-Agent "Mozilla/5.0 (compatible; MSIE 9.0; Windows Phone OS 7.5; Trident/5.0; IEMobile/9.0)". Browsing to ifconfig.me leads to the usual "Mozilla/5.0 (compatible; MSIE 10.0; Windows Phone 8.0; Trident/6.0; IEMobile/10.0; ARM; Touch; NOKIA; Lumia 920)".
Spoofing the UA for specific sites is not unusual (just have a look at override_downloaded.ini in your Opera's profile folder), as site owners are using browser switches to treat specific browsers different (as Google now)...
Therefore I expect MSFT will soon update IE10's "override_downloaded.ini", so IE10 is spoofing being something else (e.g. Chrome ;-)) when browsing to Google.
Nevertheless, out of Google's perspective, WP8 has currently a market share of 0%.

diplomat696 says:

Bunch of users here would beg to differ on your 0% comment

usr7jkg2 says:

When Google is looking for "Windows Phone 8.0" in their server logs, they won't find an entry (currently). That's what I meant with 0% out of Google's POV.

gmlongo says:

They definitely will see Windows Phone 8 in their server logs.  It is hitting their server, but their code is choosing to redirect these users.

procen says:

You are saying that's not even one has Windows Phone with 0% market share? And you own a 920!

usr7jkg2 says:

Using User Agent Switcher spoofing to be an Android Smartphone: image

schandlich says:

UC Browser is available on iOS, Android, Blackberry, and a number of other platforms. It is not webkit based. I am curious if anyone with an Android phone is able to hit maps.google.com using that browser.

usr7jkg2 says:

here.com is using a browser switch, too. When browing with IE10 on my Lumia, I'm getting a "HTTP/1.1 302 Moved Temporarily" with "Location: explore-maps://v1.0/" triggering the system to open the map app.

ade333 says:

I've never been able to access maps.google.com on my Nokia 822. Got it about 6 weeks ago and it didn't work from day 1... Thought this was known. It did work on my trophy the day prior to that.

Reflexx says:

So this is what happens when the governent tells Google, "We trust you to regulate yourselves."

diplomat696 says:

Talk about open isn't that the whole premise behind android/Google. I guess it's only open to non windows users. I wonder how their ad business partners feel about that if true...

elyscape says:

This has been the case for at least a year, actually.

dainla says:

I'm a big user of all things Google. But I'm going to change now. I'm not interested in being part if some pissing contest.

Lost one here, geniuses.

Castanedaa99 says:

F that, I rather use the Thomas Guide in my trunk.

DallasFann says:

Right now we must hope the EU steps up and goes after Google since the FCC bent over for all the Google lobbying..The EU takes their populations privacy much more seriously than the US does

DallasFann says:

Let MS support Office and XBox on iOS and leave Android out then listen to Google whine to everyone

PolishHitta says:

Im glad I pulled away from all google services except YouTube.. For now

frugo says:

So basically you haven't because in order to use Youtube you have to have Google account which means that you're tied to Google+, Gmail and Youtube whether you like it or not.

Bilal_Fakih says:

Try gmaps.com on Nokia 920 & then try it on safari on iPhone, totally different results! Very weird

Daniel_H_UK says:

What i find BullSh*t id that if that was Microsoft stopping these services they would have been hit with an anti trust fine and bitching in comments wont do anything, im taking action and i will be putting a complaint into the EU as this it wrong. i recommend everyone does this as its the only way you will get this to change as they will keep getting away with it unless we take a stand against them.
(myself i don't use Google services so this doesn't affect me but there are WP users that do and that includes YouTube i ditched it when i got Windows 8 as i use Xbox Music for my streaming needs)

Ticomfreak says:

Microsoft isn't doing this... Notice all the people changing the UA and it working/not working

xzb6np says:

Darth Google.. To Microsoft.."Once I was but a learner...
Now I am the master!"

jabtano says:

Oh hex MS just block google on win 7-8

pmhgeneral says:

Google who......................

cedarlog says:

its time to get real by boycotting their services

Odog4ever says:

Can't say I'm actively boycotting Google but when there is an alternative I ALWAYS pick the alternative.
And that was when I still had an iPhone 3G I stopped using Gmaps after it got me lost several times and I changed the default seach provider to Yahoo.
So currently I'm still using Youtube, Google Reader, and Kindle Fire (Android). As soon as I can get viable replacements for that stuff I can delete my Google account. I wonder if my dormant gmail/g+ account is inflating there numbers anymore than it needs to be...

nwildcat says:

A boycott is great and all, but it'd probably be more useful to start a petition asking for the FTC to look into this specific issue and then once whatever goal you set is reached, forward it to the FTC and Senate members who are on the Commerce Committee. It's much more likely that it will get looked into and possibly force Google's hand than just boycotting their services when it won't be everyone who does so and there's still plenty on other platforms who will use it. Get the attention of the FTC or the Senate committee on this issue and it won't matter how many others continue to use Google, they may be forced to change their ways. Yes, I know they were recently cleared by the FTC, that was on a different issue entirely .

Adam Bombb says:

I agree.  Boycotting Google will not have an effect.  The WP community is just too small.  A petition "might" work, but then again, I don't think you would get enough signatures from WP users who care or have knowledge about Google's shenanigans.

scdkad says:

Suppose MS was to cut off access to Skype for all Android users?

dannyd86 says:

that would be like quitting a job out of spite, Right now android is too big of a skype user base to take that hit on the wallet. MIcrosft still wont release a skype app for my Blackberry 7 or playbook, not because there lazy, because they dont want to support the compatition. We all have our fingers crossed skype is being made available for BB10. But with these kindoff google attacks going on microsoft probably feels the same way with RIM

spyderzWPC says:

yes but ms isnt blocking blackberry from making their own app.  The difference is google is blockign windows device from accessing their service, based off the identity of the device as a windows phone.

The only thing I really miss from wp is a good service equivalent to google lattitude. the one in gmaps pro is not as good as the native one. Can you recommend something to me? The people I need to follow use iOS, wp and Android. Thanks

eLseStudio says:

Where is the Google once was? Openness, innovate web service, available everywhere as long as there is internet. Now denying a raising phone OS user base...

bbqrooster says:

And what was that petition to Google about asking them to write apps for WP8? That might actually give Google idea that screwing WP8 users more is a better idea.

dannyd86 says:

scrolling through these comments on my blackberry I saw litteraly 50 ads by google lol. PS, Microsft does this with RIM over skype. 

scdkad says:

It sucks seeing these google ads every 10 comments-pretty annoying. I'm not a advertising exe but I guess if someone clicks the ad then WPC gets $$?

seanles says:

Oh god, get real. I lost all respect for the author and content of this article when i read "Google’s less-than-awesome mapping service" , lets be real. Ok, Bing maps is a steaming pile of shit compared to Google maps. Dont watch MS piss on me and regurgitate their press releases that it's raining. This is supposed to be a third-party independent site, and when you make statements that are so obviously biased and beyond reasoning, you really throw your credibility into question.
I love this site, I read it multiple times daily and i've tipped a few times and been credited for it. If i didnt i sure as hell wouldnt care to take my time and email in. But this shit is unquestionably not cool. Please tone down the MS fanboy shit and call a spade a spade. In this case, Bing maps kinda do the trick sometimes, but the service needs serious overhaul and improvement to stack up anywhere close to Google maps. They aren't in the same galaxy at the moment, lets not sink to the level of pretending they are because that's what we're kinda stuck with at the moment. That's not right, and when we do it we're just as bad as all the apple fanboys we all know and dislike.

stevethenerd says:

How much longer before google.com fails completely on WP? :-o

Victor Teles says:

Meh, I prefer Nokia Maps anyways...

Can someone do an app called user agent switcher for Windows Phone?

powellce says:

I started my boycott long ago.

Seth Thomas says:

So? I didn't even knew it worked in the first place.

KrazyKatz64 says:

Awwww ...... not affect me , LOL
SInce first day I began using WP on my Lumia , I use only NK Map and Bing Map.
Except sometimes my friend sent me some pin-point on the Gmap.

DSEditorjoel says:

"we can’t see why you would prefer it over Bing or Nokia Maps"


Daniel, I respect you, this site, and this community, but if you really think and MS or Nokia services hold a candle to Google right now, you're way off.


This is coming from someone who's switching between an 8X and a Nexus 4. This difference is night and day, and it's most definitely in Android's favor.


You cannot be this naive.

Luminatic says:

I understand what DSE... means. Sometimes us users for whom some of googles services are working better than the ones if googles competitors (e.g. MS) have the feeling we're not being taken seriously on this site. I, for example, can't believe that some people are STILL not seeing that MS' services aren't best for all of us and suggesting that we just shouldn't use google are not helping at all.

I would wish for an article on, say, the reasons what keeps some people from using googles alternatives, maybe together with telling where they live - if only to make seen that we have a voice here, too.

Bilal_Fakih says:

Dude, if you are taking about maps then Nokia is,way better and does the job well! Besides gmaps need to be updated, till now the satellite images of my town is like 10 years ago and things have changed but in Bing and Nokia maps ate updated. To me this is a fail! Look yes google has awesome services but I'm not worried at all just YouTube is the only thing you can't replace!

dude I switched from iPhone to Nokia Lumia 920 and I didn't go to android even though I would have since In the family we have s2! Its simply a copy cat of the ios and boring! Don't compare wp8 with ur nexus and jelly bean! Android sucked at the beginning and with time it grew and got better and that's for for sure what will happen to wp8 it will get better! Even though I believe that WP 8 is amazing!

wp8 is gr8 and awesome and hey they didn't copy iOs! So,don't be stupid and tell us how wow is ur andriod after all of this time.....

Iain_S says:

wow what are you smoking buddy. Google's apps and services dont hold a candle to what MS have, and google maps crap compared to Nokia maps and gps nav.

oh my goodness, how sad.
i never used that crap anyway, Nokia Maps kicks the  fecese out of google maps.

Alex Kj says:

This is a good thing, it should encourage MS and Nokia to make more improvements (and much faster) to their own mapping services to make them a more competitive replacement. In the end Google will lose, but all of the customers (regardless of mobile platform) will benefit from this action because there will be more alternatives. So stop your whining and just wait for MS and Nokia to do that... Just use a 3rd-party Google Maps apps (they still work) for now if you're too dependant on Google Maps.

Eldar ALiev says:

If this is true - this is outragoeus!!!
Definitely boycott!!!

Fellow Windows Phone Users!! Boycott Google!! Stop using their hideous services!!

Panu16 says:

I can think of several ways for Microsoft to respond.

  1. Buy AdBlock and make a big news out of it (even though MSFT may choose to do nothing of it).   This will strike fear into Google for their wallet.  All reports say that desktop ad revenue is still the lion share of all Google revenue and their mobile ad business is practically not generating anything. Also, AdBlock should not cost that much to MSFT. 
  2. Leverage the enterprise dominance by denying access to popular Microsoft offerings from Android devices.  E.g., end support for Chrome (phone or tablet) on SharePoint, deny to sell Exchange client access license to Android devices or charge exorbitant price for the CAL for Android compared to iOS. 


Adam Bombb says:

I want to thank you Daniel for posting this.  It seems that everyone is catching on now that Google lied about this today. 


15israellai says:

Since you all criticised Google maps that much, I went ahead and tried Nokia maps (I'm from AC). As a Hongkonger, when I saw all mandarin names in Hong Kong I instantly decided to boycott them. Sorry, but I'm infuriated by this enormous loophole. As if nokia were a communist.

Great!! Bing Maps SUCK in SL.. 
Nokia maps is not available for HTC products ... right.. I'm screwed!!!!!!!!!!!

Tronberry says:

Such is the fate of the underdogs.  Just adds another sting for us who already don't get app support from most things.  Thankfully, I don't ever use google search anymore, so this doesn't affect me at all.  I just hope that we can get a bigger user base in the near future so that you won't have to worry if WP is supported all the time.
On a sidenote, Google is still being Google...

Metallinatus says:

Well.... it was first Microsoft who didn't want Google to bring Chrome to Windows 8 RT, right?
If MS doesn't want Google on their ARM OSs, so be it....

Iain_S says:

MS has nothing against google making a modern app for RT, Google doesn't want to make it, get your facts correct.

peper-eliot says:

The https link is working

2013 : Google is now starting THE big fight because first, he have the crew with him, glued to his services, and second, MS is now a dangerous challenger with the great transition he make last year ( w8 wp8 office365, bing-Nokia maps, SkyDrive, Skype...)

Jim_MAY says:

Who NEEDS Google??? Going the way of Yahoo, sell that Ogle stock.

Hisham Ahmed says:

I know Google may be evil, but I just can't stop using their services !

YouTube has no alternative.

Google Maps is unmatched in India.

Google Search cannot be replaced (Bing is pretty good but......)

GMail ain't important to me.I just use it to check my YouTube responses,but otherwise, Outlook is my primary mail client.

Luminatic says:

That's what I mean .. If googles competitors want people use their services, they need to make them better. Globally, not only in certain places!

Darren Blade says:

Google Maps is still working at the local Country addresses, ie. https://maps.google.co.nz

chucky78 says:

I want to know what happened to "We need to pick a fight". Microsoft keeps taking hits and throwing nothing back not even blocking.

MrSean490 says:

The workarounds don't seem to work properly on Windows Phone 7.
To anyone with a Windows Phone 8, can you properly use the google maps when it loads? Like, slide your finger and the MAP moves, rather than the entire page?

Vheissu says:

What happened to a free and open internet Google or is that only when it's conducive to your business model. #stopsopa

napu says:

Google what? If I talk about maps I mean Nokia Maps. The user should not tolerate such behavior and avoid using google services.

david90531 says:

Such a shame, a big company like Google shouldn't have to do this to mess with its competitors, they are obviously insecure about their products. I used to think Google is great but I'm a  fan no more.
Good thing I've learned to live without Google apps, even though still using an android tablet, I use Skydrive and Nokia Maps/Bing Maps with ease, Gmail is the only thing keeping me.

Aaron Rolls says:

Google maps also redirects to search on Harmattan. So ours not just a WP problem.

EricCantona says:

Why do you people even care so much about Google products? If I can be very efficient -even more- without G products.. so can you. 

Luminatic says:

Well,then tell me an internet search tool that delivers as good results as google does. In my country.

Sigh. How many times does it have to be repeated that for some countries, some non-google-tools just don't deliver good results?

Residing says:

Then, you should continue to use Google, if it works better for you.  For the rest of us, Bing works fine, as well as Bing Maps, Nokia Maps, and Nokia Drive.
Bing may never provide you with the results you need, now or in the future; with that said, no one begrudges you for using Google services on you WP.

cdrk says:

Google would not be around without Microsoft Windows juggernaut. The founders rake in billions and now got over their heads, forgot their roots and you think Chrome OS will win by doing all these? Just LOL and disappointed with such childish act.

bsd107 says:

If Nokia could get their traffic data up to snuff (it pales compared to google) and implement a Street View equivalent we wouldn't need Google Maps at all....

Residing says:

I don't need Google Maps, regardless.    As a matter of fact, I'm pretty adept at navigation my city and the surrounding areas, so I rarely need maps to begin with.  But if I need navigation....
I use Nokia Maps and Nokia Drive.  For non Nokia users, perhaps they want or need Google Maps, but there are alternatives on WP in the Marketplace for non Nokia users.

dipayanster says:

who uses gmaps anymore lol?

abe3211 says:

Lumia 710, Didn't work. Booo

frugo says:

OOOOOOHHH BUlll****** you're not gonna do anything, I wanna still use Youtube which means whether I like it or not I'm tied to G+, Gmail and then Youtube via Google account anyway.

sholokov says:

I said goodbye to Google a couple of days ago. Transferred everything to Hotmail/Outlook, started using Vimeo, Nokia maps (Here.com or Here.net), Vonage (instead of Google Voice), etc. I have survived with just a little effort. Now only if WPC would also stop using YouTube, that would be great.

snakechia says:

Google is dooming!

sanien says:

THATS IT! Im closing my google account down tards! I was planing on buying two small cheap android tablets for the kid to play with but now.... screw them! I disgust how Google has been acting lately.

petibear says:

It reminds me much of Microsoft misusing their OS dominance to block Netscape ... I hope Google get fined heavily for this. 

What is this "google" you speak of? I Binged it and found nothing. ;-)

OMG!!! I'm going to jump off a bridge!  Wait, I don't have access to google maps, so now I can't find any.....oh well.

MrBinny says:

The only thing i use on my wp from google/metrotube is youtube. 
I dont understand why you want to use google maps when we have nokia maps.

andremr says:

If Bing Services were available in all countries.... This wouldn't matter... If we could use FULL BING SERVICES IN PORTUGAL..

I don't want to use google maps. I have Nokia maps which rocks. However this is the petty childish response to there already childish decision to cut off windows phone users. Google need a slap. They clearly havent considered the revenue they're losing . They think that limiting users will drive them to their products. IPhone have begun to fail with this approach. Intact there limitations are the very reason I chose WP7 over android

Jiggernauts says:

It works if you do the following:
1) Do a Google search for the address you want.
2) After the results appear then choose "Maps" along the top option bar in Google.

This seems to be the only way that it will bring you to the google maps option.

pegg says:

I never was able to go to maps.google.com on my WP. Not just recently.

yeungl says:

Now, Microsoft should buy tomtom or Garmin, or even NAVTEQ and open NOKIA map to all WP users to solve the problem

sholokov says:

Navteq is a Nokia sister company and Garmin uses Navteq.

Kailash007 says:

In this case, Microsoft can block google from running on Windows PC 

Aggemam says:

Very happy I bought a l920. Was tempted to go for a note 2. Today I visited a local phone dealer. I had a quick hands on experience with their demo model. Much to my surprise, it was lagging, as I swiped the homescreens. I thought the jelly bean update had fixed that. Something as basic as a smooth UI... Wtf? Why are WP taking so much heat, for it's minor issues? I don't get it. Screw google.

markbyrn says:


Apple: We kicked Google maps off iOS and replaced it with our own inferior maps app.


Google: Okay Apple, here’s a shiny new map app that’s even better than Android.


Microsoft: Wait a minute, how about a map app for Windows Phone?


Google: Oh you, thanks for reminding us. Not only will you never get a map app but we’re breaking the browser functionality – bwahahaha!

Iain_S says:

Microsoft: Oh we have a map app fully intergrated into the OS powered via Nokia's excellent mapping technology.

Jandieg says:

The reason behind is that IE10 is still not capable of allowing embedded touch/pan over the map area... making the map useless.
But they should be more polite displaying something like "not supported due to..."

dynamic_cast says:

Google is trying to kill themselves

Xaphoon148 says:

Got Nokia maps and drive on my 920, doesn't need that Googles**t...

BDub0817 says:

go to Here.com, no need for google maps anymore.

sholokov says:

WPCentral! Can we start using Vimeo or some other service on this website instead of using YouTube. Some of us have boycotted YouTube already and are now missing out on the videos you guys post.

Antistatic says:

That is so disappointing behavior of Google!
I am using a lot of Google stuff, and I never had the slightest idea of this stupid behavior from a company of that size! They should be happy for the interest from all kind of users, instead of sorting some of them out and block them with these kind of tricks.
I hope Google do change now, and let all platforms access their services, and start to develop an excellent app for WP!

afrokorean says:

This has been going on for months....my hd7 hasn't been able to pull google maps since before summer of 2012...the only workaround was to install opera mobile for wp7 from bazaar but then no rotation support...

NoSpin says:

Scroogled! #Droidrage

Iain_S says:

And I have seen today that google have backpeddled giving some lame excuse and their crappy mapping services will once again be available to WP users. I would not touch thier shit with a 10' pole now.

kinaton says:

Maybe Microsoft should block google os from accessing Skype :)

roxpace says:

If you guys wanna solve this, use the app USER AGENT SWITCHER.
I also got redirected from maps.google.com but one changed to fake Android it worked perfectly, so shame on you Google. This is a low measure in your companys history.

Clice says:

I wish I could use Bing and Bing maps or Nokia Maps... but Bing is not very good outside the US, and they for sure have no GPS feature for my country..

Viracocha says:

My first Windows Phone was the Samsung Focus.  Back then, I didn't feel Bing was up to snuff, so I carried over my bad habbit of using Google to do all my searching with my newly aquired Lumia 920.  After hearing about the YouTube api blockage and now this, I made a conscious effort to JUST USE BING.  Wow.  So many improvements and WAY BETTER INTEGRATION into the phone OS.  Searching and doing different tasks with the search results is so much more efficient that I wish I made the switch sooner.
In the words of Ron Burgendy, "Go EFFF yourself, Google."