There’s little doubt that Google Maps is one of the crown jewels in Google’s mobile fleet of apps. The Maps app has existed as part of Android as a whole since the G1, but began to gain serious traction when the Droid launched when Google announced they’d now bundle turn-by-turn navigation software with the app, going as far back as phones running 1.6. A move that had a noticeable effect on both TomTom and Garmin stock at the time. A hit that, for what it’s worth, TomTom has yet to fully recover from.
Well, Google’s focus on their Maps application has apparently paid off, as rumor has it that Google Maps is the first app on the Android Market to pass 50 million downloads. The claim is a little hard to confirm as a) it seems the only indicator is the “50,000,000 – 100,000,000” downloads indicator on the app’s Market page, and b) it’s unclear whether this includes devices merely bundled with Google Maps. Google began unbundling their core apps from the OS, requiring separate downloads for new updates, so this may account for much of the downloads. Again, for what it’s worth, Gmail still hovers in the 10 million to 50 million range of downloads.
Still, it’s a testament to one of the better apps on the platform. Google’s not known for being consistent with their official apps that get updates (still waiting on a tablet-friendly Google Reader, guys), but it’s good to know that when they put their collective engineer minds to it, they can create something really amazing.
Source: Android Police