At the end of August, Apple revealed it would be launching its very own ratings solutions within Apple Maps. Talk of “Apple reviews” flew around the Twitterverse and, as usual, there was a lot of conjecture about what this new feature might mean.
Apple Maps ratings (yep, that’s right — ratings not reviews, though they may be on the way) has been in beta testing in iOS 14 and will soon roll out globally. The update was first spotted by Twitter user, Beau Giles.
Currently, Apple Maps relies on review data from third-party solutions such as Yelp, Foursquare, and Tripadvisor.
The news of Apple ratings comes after Apple Maps introduced a host of new features back in February, including favorite locations and indoor maps.
With so much noise surrounding the announcement, we wanted to clear up what’s new, pose some potential questions and outcomes, and explore what this new feature might mean for local SEOs.
Instead of relying on the likes of third-party review sites, Apple Maps will soon house its own native ratings.
Removing the use of third-party review sites should give both Apple and searchers more control. As it stands, if users want to explore more business reviews through Apple Maps, they’ll be directed to download the Yelp, Foursquare, or Tripadvisor app, which doesn’t make for the best user experience.
From what we can see, Apple Maps’ new ratings system will operate much like Facebook recommendations,…