Talk about an identity crisis: Google Local, once known as Google Maps, is changing its name back to Google Maps.
This monicker madness all began in 2005. At the time, Google's online mapping and directions feature was called Google Maps.
For strategic reasons, in October of that year Google merged Google Maps with Google Local, which finds goods and services based on where the businesses are located. To stress the feature's "local" angle, Google decided to call the newly meshed feature Google Local.
Name confusion reigned because, obviously, some habits are hard to break. A lot of users continued to call the feature Google Maps.
Flash forward to April 21 of this year. For reasons it explains here, Google has changed the feature's name back to Google Maps.
"Many have asked us to 'bring back Google Maps,' " Google Maps and Search Product Manager Thai Tran wrote on Google's blog. "Since it's most important to us to give our users what they want, we've decided to change the name."
So is the Google Local contingent going to speak up next? Bring back Google Local!
Regardless of what it's called, the combo has proven to be a potent one-two punch. Google executives on April 20 cited the facet as a chief reason why the company's been streamrolling its competitors lately.