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Waze and Google Maps Suspend Israel Traffic Updates

Google said this was done for the safety of Israelis.

Google announced that its Google Maps service, as well as its separate traffic and maps service app Waze will not provide information about the roads in Israel during the “Iron Swords” War in Gaza. This is to prevent such information from aiding Hamas terrorists to find their way within the country and learn about where the IDF and Israel Police have set up roadblocks.

Google Maps and Waze made a similar move in Ukraine in 2022 after the Russian invasion of that country.

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But Israelis will still be able to access directions on how to reach destinations in the country by car, just not the best routes at a given time, not updates on traffic jams, etc.

Waze was acquired by Google in 2013 for $1 billion. Last December Google announced plans to have Waze merge with Google Maps.

“As we have done previously in conflict situations and in response to the evolving situation in the region,” explained Google, “we have temporarily disabled the ability to see live traffic conditions and busyness information out of consideration for the safety of local communities. Anyone navigating to a specific place will still get routes and ETAs that take current traffic conditions into account.”

Waze was originally founded by Israeli developers Ehud Shabtai, Amir Shinar, and Uri Levine in 2006 under the name FreeMap Israel. Waze provides satellite navigation software on smartphones and other computers that support the Global Positioning System (GPS), as well as turn-by-turn navigation.

Waze is a community-driven traffic navigation app that helps millions of users get to where they’re going through real-time road alerts and an up-to-the-moment map. Thanks to its network of drivers, Waze saves you time by instantly alerting you to traffic, roadworks, crashes, police and more. From traffic-avoiding reroutes, real-time safety updates and low petrol price alerts, Waze is a community of drivers helping other drivers.

Waze is available in over 50 countries and territories, and is used by over 130 million people worldwide. It is available for free on iOS and Android devices.



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