Here’s what we’re reading today at 435 Digital as we cruise downhill to the weekend:

A very happy birthday to our supreme overlord, Google, who turned 14 yesterday and celebrated with a special Google Doodle:

If you’re one of the people who’s not too happy with the Apple Maps experience, a new Google Maps app might sound the pick-me-up you needed this week. That is, until you use it. Mashable’s Chris Taylor discusses the Google Maps app and how it doesn’t live up to the Google Maps we know and loved on iOS 5 and earlier.

Sadly for iPhone users, it looks like the best use you’re going to get out of this is as a means to fool your Android-toting friends: look, I got Google Maps for iOS 6 early!

Because if you’re expecting anything like the Google Maps iPhone app we knew and loved in iOS 5 and previous releases, you’re going to be disappointed

That’s sad. If it makes you feel any better, iPhone users, Apple is really REALLY sorry:

At Apple, we strive to make world-class products that deliver the best experience possible to our customers. With the launch of our new Maps last week, we fell short on this commitment. We are extremely sorry for the frustration this has caused our customers and we are doing everything we can to make Maps better.

We launched Maps initially with the first version of iOS. As time progressed, we wanted to provide our customers with even better Maps including features such as turn-by-turn directions, voice integration, Flyover and vector-based maps. In order to do this, we had to create a new version of Maps from the ground up.

There are already more than 100 million iOS devices using the new Apple Maps, with more and more joining us every day. In just over a week, iOS users with the new Maps have already searched for nearly half a billion locations. The more our customers use our Maps the better it will get and we greatly appreciate all of the feedback we have received from you.

(Insert obligatory comment about how this never would have happened under Steve Jobs)

While we’re on the subject of Apple, maps aren’t the only thing that don’t work with iOS6. Apple’s UDID replacement for iOS 6, a more private ad tool dubbed the Apple Advertising Identifier that users can opt out of, isn’t working according to mobile app marketing platform Trademob. Any iOS 6 users who updated over Wi-Fi are showing IDs that are all zeros, instead of the unique number sequences being sent by those who plugged their devices in and updated via iTunes or Xcode.

So that should be lots of fun.

Speaking of maps, Google Maps has released an underwater street view option that allows you to have a closer look at the Great Barrier Reef, Hawaii, and the Philippines. Watch here.

Happy Friday!