On Wednesday July 14 2010 Apple announced they had purchased a company in Quebec called Poly9. The map company's expertise is likely going to be re-applied in an effort to replace google maps and google earth on the iPhone.
Poly9 is the second mapping company that Apple has purchased in the past year, Place base was the first. Traditionally Apple is conservative when it comes to buying other companies. Since 1997 Apple has only acquired 17 companies total.
You can find a list of Apple's acquisitions and mergers by clicking here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_mergers_and_acquisitions_by_Apple
Apple has elected not to inform the public what it's intentions are for the technology that Poly9 has produced.
One of the areas that Apple needs improvement in is mapping technology. These two mapping and software companies may help Apple close the gap on it's ability to track your location.
These two companies merging must have been in the works for a while since Poly9 employees have already begun to relocate to Apples' facilities in Canada.
Apple has continued to hear complaints about the antenna reception problems on the iPhone 4, and is expected to hold a press conference on July 16 to address the concerns and perhaps offer a solution. Some bloggers have speculated that the acquisition of Poly9 is merely a distraction from the negative press that Apple is getting over the new iPhone 4.
The iPhone 4 has been in the news lately for a antenna reception problem. It uses it's metal frame as an antenna. Some users are experiencing problems with said antenna.
One of the possible solutions is an enormous recall on the new device which would leave the iPhone 4 early adopters with a little more hesitation next time a new device is released.