HERE set to pull the plug on Windows 10 and Windows 8 phones come March 29

After a successful takeover by a consortium of premium German automobile manufacturers, HERE will pull its app from Windows store and remove support for Windows 10 and Windows 8 phone apps from 29 March.

However, the firm will continue to pour in critical bug fixes to those apps that are currently installed in Windows 8 phones.

"We’ve been developing mobile maps applications for about 10 years, since the first smartphones came with GPS. As the market evolves, we keep in step by introducing our apps for new operating systems while stopping support for others.

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"Although the essence of the HERE apps lives on in the Windows Maps app, we are removing the HERE branded apps from the Windows 10 store on March 29, 2016 and will limit the development of the apps for Windows Phone 8 to critical bug fixes," said the firm in a blog post.

After Windows 10 was launched, HERE used a workaround to make its app compatible with the new operating system which ends on June 30. From July 1, users of Windows 10 phone will no longer be able to access their beloved HERE maps app.

On the other hand, users of older Windows 8 phones will continue to receive critical bug fixes from HERE which means that even though they won't be able to enjoy new features, they will be able to use the app for their daily navigation needs.

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To show that it cares for loyal users, HERE suggests existing Windows 10 mobile users to use the default Windows Maps app which is pre-installed in Windows phones.

"The Windows Maps app contains many HERE elements since Microsoft has developed it using the HERE Platform and with assets they received from HERE in 2014. Based on your comments on HERE 360 and elsewhere, we know many of you are already having a good experience using Windows Maps," it says.

Offering high definition maps combined with cloud technology for both businesses and individual users, HERE was originally owned by Nokia and was purchased by a consortium of premium automobile manufacturers like Audi, BMW and Mercedes in August last year. The consortium paid up $3.07 billion for the service and beat the likes of Uber, Amazon, Alibaba, Apple and Facebook.

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At the time of its purchase, HERE offered public transit maps for more than 950 cities and could operate even without an internet connection. It also offered to connect cars "to local infrastructure such as traffic lights and parking spaces to help drivers save time and keep roads safer."

HERE's Maps service was originally optimised for the mobile tech industry but the firm's decision to exit Windows may signal a permanent shift from mobiles to automobile navigation.

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