After a leaked communication from Yelp reportedly alleged some search traffic was being infiltrated by Google+, Google Map's latest update for iOS devices may draw even more ire from Yelp. That's because some of features in Google Maps' latest update enhance the app's searches of local listings, territory Yelp built its house on.

Google Map's iOS update version 3.2.0 includes a number of upgrades, but it's the "Explore" feature that will hunt on Yelp's land. Much like the model used by the Yelp app, the Explore feature will serve as a local guide to finding everything from bars and restaurants to HVAC and landscaping services.

The enhancement of local search features isn't an idea without merit or practicality, as its a logical accompaniment to Google Maps' growing list of offerings. Google, however, has long coveted Yelp and attempted to buy out the much smaller company in 2009 for more than $550 million, but Yelp walked away from the offer.

On July 10 a leaked document stated Google was said to have injected its Google+ listings into search results to steer users away from links associated with Yelp and other local guides. In a case study presented in the document, a search for "Gary Danko Yelp" was depicted as having Google+ results artificially blended among "organic" listings.

The study concluded Google siphoned up to 20 percent of search traffic from competitors, though it stated the practice hadn't negatively impacted Yelp's overall traffic.

While some may conclude that Google Maps' latest update is a direct jab at Yelp, Google may have also been considering moves made by Apple to grow its own mapping service. Reddit user Heyyoudvd reported Apple was updating its Apple Maps points of interest every day at 3 a.m. EST -- other Redditors were said to have confirmed the findings.

"Apple actually updates POI data now," wrote Heyyoudved. "If you see errors in your neighborhood, you can correct them with the 'Report a Problem' button on the Maps info screen. New data is pushed out by Apple's servers every single day, so the Maps app is now improving at a quick pace."

A release about updates in the latest version of Google Maps for iOS, notes:  "Search results appear with descriptions right on the map, to help you make choices quickly; view search results on the map or in a list and easily switch between them; and see your reservations and events from Gmail labeled on the map. Try the improved Explore, a local guide that shows you different places and activities depending on the location and time of day." 

ⓒ 2021 All rights reserved. Do not reproduce without permission.