Noam Bardin, CEO of crowd-sourced mapping service Waze, has confirmed via blog post that his company has accepted an offer from Google to buy the company.
While neither Google nor Waze revealed financial details of the deal, the Wall Street Journal has published a report that Google paid just over $1 billion for Waze, which is in line with previous reports released prior to today's confirmation.
Bardin said Google shares Waze's vision of a global mapping service, updated in real time by local communities.
"We are excited about the prospect of working with the Google Maps team to enhance our search capabilities and to join them in their ongoing efforts to build the best map of the world," Bardin said.
Bardin stressed that nothing "practical" would change at Waze, saying the company would maintain its community, brand, service and organization. He said the "community hierarchy, responsibilities and processes will remain the same."
Waze's mobile app for iOS and Android gathers map information from its 50 million users. Those maps are then edited by users who have been promoted to a status that allows them to check and ensure that new routes are accurate. Because of its crowd-sourced model, Waze is able to report traffic conditions, construction zones and other hazards or delays in real time.
Many believed Apple would snatch up Waze but talks between the two Cupertino-based companies apparently never progressed. TechCrunch reported that Apple, which uses Waze data for its criticized Apple maps products, offered Waze between $500 to $750 million, but that claim was later put to rest by a follow-up report. from TechCrunch that stated Apple never made a bid for Waze.
Bloomberg first reported on Google's talks with Waze in a May 23 report. News of the completed deal was first reported yesterday by Globes, an Israeli outlet. Globes reported the final bid was $1.3 billion.
Bloomberg reported that Google and Waze could officially announce the deal as early as yesterday. As of this writing nothing had been confirmed.