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iOS 6 beta hints Apple Maps could come to Mac OS X

Apple's new Maps in iOS may not be limited to the iPhone and iPad, as new evidence suggests the company could also bring its in-house mapping solution to the Mac.

Developer Cody Cooper discovered a code dump in the new Maps application in Apple's iOS 6 beta. The code, shared with Technically Personal, mentions a set of Intel-based graphics chipsets found in Mac hardware.

Specifically, the software discovered by Cooper disables features like shading on certain Intel graphics chipsets. He said that some older Intel chipsets have poor support for shading, which is why Apple would want to disable that capability for some Macs. No mention of ATI Radeon chipsets was found.

The code found in the iOS 6 beta suggests that Apple could be planning to bring its new Maps software to its OS X Mac operating system in addition to iOS. Apple's new Maps application for iOS will replace the Google-based offering that has been found in every version of the mobile operating system to date.

Apple unveiled its all-new Maps application last month at its annual Worldwide Developers Conference. It features a new crowd-sourced traffic service, built-in turn-by-turn navigation, and integrated user reviews from Yelp.

Maps in iOS 6 will also feature Siri integration, allowing users to ask for directions or find points of interest by using just their voice. And the new "Flyover" feature has detailed 3D models of cities from around the world.

In anticipation of Apple's Maps announcement, Google unveiled its own enhancements to its mapping software just days before WWDC. The company is rolling out its own three-dimensional mapping imagery, and plans to have communities home to about 300 million people mapped with it by the end of the year.