For starters, let's get the payware off the table. The idea is that the map data, being more updated and including the traffic information is the basis for monetization from businesses and not from the users.
Regarding the mapping activities, the good news is that all the work done in waze overrides the grid data received in a manner whereas the street names, travel directions, speed information and other characteristics (including the points and user ownership) are either inserted into the grid (in case of geometrical equivalence) or added over (in case of a difference). The grid is not complete – it is simply the geometrical information of the roads (done using aerial information from planes and other equipment so there are roads that are still missing from the map) that needs be validated and edited. It has no road names, no travel direction, no turn restrictions, etc., all of which can be done or overlaid by waze users.
We have developed integration mechanism and have done several iterations and based on the Canadian experience, we think it should be a positive improvement. As you can see in the forum, the Canadian users have responded quite positively:
wscotchmer wrote:99% of the roads in my area lined up with the Canada base maps and were incorporated into that. The other roads that didn't... I'm just deleting.
This is a process in any case (we do not receive all the maps at once and cannot upload all the maps at once) so I see no contradiction between continuing the mapping activities and the grid, as whatever is done will need be done anyway and is not lost in terms of data (and of course points).