News | Technology | OnlineNew Apple Maps streaming patent could prove useful in travelThis article was originally published onBy Nick Vivion | March 24, 2015 Apple received a patent that could provide some new ways of streaming location and mapping to different groups.The idea is basically that location sharing could be used within a mapping application to deliver not just one location but a complete path. This sort of path mapping has long been a feature of waypoint-based GPS technology but has never been integrated into smartphone-based mapping technology like this.The image below from the patent filing shows how a location of one car could be shared directly with another car in an ongoing basis, which would create a series of navigable points. In this driving example, it could be for a friend that wants to share the best way to get to home out in the country.Sharing maps isn't limited to just cell networks – the patent also includes sharing maps via iCloud or Bluetooth.In travel, this technology could be used to provide a series of waypoints within a map for a local's guide to a particular location or a digital concierge tour enabled with direct mapping capabilities. By sharing a map that you created during your last trip to Singapore, for example, you could create a "greatest hits" street food tour that could be beamed to a friend via Bluetooth while chatting about the trip.For startups and event marketers playing in the destination-engagement field, this could also be manipulated into a type of digital treasure hunt where groups follow various waypoints attached to a real person. It's kind of like "Where's Waldo" for travel.The widespread availability of iBeacons can also be integrated here, allowing for an additional type of waypoint within the streaming map. The map could also be updated live, as a companion to a project such as the Remote Control Tourist. This would be a way to engage retail and brick-and-mortar hospitality businesses within the streaming map.Another key feature of the patent is screen mirroring, where the secondary user can actually see what the primary users sees on the screen. This could include points-of-interest or other pieces of information that pertain to the route laid out on the map. By being able to share the screen during key parts of a journey, there's lots of flexibility for different behaviors as users begin to experiment with map streaming.The patent also includes a bit about the transmitting device being carried by an animal or a robot, which could allow documentation of hard-to-reach places or for virtual robot wayfinders.NB: Compass map image courtesy Shutterstock.