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Yandex Maps to Be Integrated Into Apple Software in Russia

Sept. 17 (Bloomberg) -- Yandex NV, Russia’s largest Web search engine, will have its location-search service integrated in the latest version of Apple Inc.’s software used in the iPhone and iPad sold in the country, according to vendors.

Apple has developed its own maps tools for users of the new iOS 6 operating system, which powers the iPhone 5 unveiled last week, replacing a service offered by Google Inc. Alexander Patsay, director of program management at Moscow-based software maker Parallels Holding Ltd., said he has tested the developer version of iOS 6 and noticed that its Maps application is integrated with Yandex’s geographical search.

“When you search for Vladimir Lenin’s Mausoleum, it offers you to get more details on Yandex.Maps application or offers to download Yandex.Maps from App Store if the user doesn’t have it installed,” Patsay said by phone today.

Ochir Mandzhikov, a Yandex spokesman in Moscow, declined to comment, as did Irina Efremova, an Apple spokeswoman in Moscow.

The iOS 6 system will be available for download on Sept. 19. Cupertino, California-based Apple said today orders for the iPhone 5 topped two million units in the first 24 hours.

The company dropped using Google’s applications including Google Maps and YouTube because Google’s Android software helps other smartphone producers to compete with Apple.

TomTom, Yelp

Other partners Apple is working with on maps include Yelp Inc., TomTom NV, as well as China’s AutoNavi Holdings Ltd.

“In summer, Apple showed how third-party services like Yelp on the U.S. can be integrated into its Maps application,” said Vladislav Zavyalov, a marketing manager at re:Store Retail Group, an official seller of Apple gadgets with 94 stores in Russia and Europe. “The same in Russia: if Maps doesn’t show you enough information, you may use Yandex.Maps.”

Yandex had a 60.5 percent share in Russia’s Internet-search market last month, compared with Google’s 26.6 percent, according to LiveInternet.ru statistics. Yandex’s share was down from 65.1 percent in February 2011.

“To hold its market share, it’s essential for Yandex to expand its position in ecosystems created by Apple and Google,” said Konstantin Belov, an analyst at UralSib Capital. “Inclusion of Yandex.Maps into Apple’s new software is important from this standpoint.”

Yandex climbed 0.4 percent to $24.82 at 11:02 a.m. in New York. The company raised $1.3 billion in May last year selling shares at $25 apiece in an initial public offering on the Nasdaq Stock Market.

To contact the reporter on this story: Ilya Khrennikov in Moscow at ikhrennikov@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: John Viljoen at jviljoen@bloomberg.net

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