You know that social traffic app with a logo of a smiling chat bubble with wheels? Yep, that’s Waze. And Google has confirmed that it has already closed its acquisition for a reported $1 billion plus.
Waze is an Israeli community mapping and navigation app that provides users with real-time traffic updates in about 190 counties. It has a strong user base of 50 million and has a 4 and a half star rating on the Apple App Store and the Google Play Store.
With the acquisition of the 5-year-old company, Google is aiming to enhance Google Maps with some of the traffic update features provided by Waze and enhance Waze with Google’s search capabilities. Peter Cohan wrote at Forbes.com that one of the possible reasons why Google bought Waze is to keep it away from competitors like Apple.
As for the Waze development team, according to Google they will remain in Israel and operate separately for now.