Waze, the Israeli-developed free mobile navigation app, won the Mobile World Congress Judges' Choice award this week for best overall mobile application, beating out major players like the file-hosting service Dropbox, the personalized news magazine Flipboard and the electronic payment service Square.

"This is a huge win for our community — thanks Wazers, for making us number 1!" the company said on its Facebook page.

The award was presented Tuesday in Barcelona, where the conference is being held through Thursday.

Last year was a breakthrough year for Waze, which benefited from Apple's map mishaps on the iOS-6 mobile operating system. Responding to complaints about the flaws in the map application, Apple CEO Tim Cook recommended Waze as an alternative. Quite a lot of people took his advice, with Waze reporting that 36 million drivers used the app in 2012 to help them drive nearly 10 billion kilometers.

Apple offered to buy the Israeli startup, but Waze declined the offer, the technology blog TechCrunch reported in January.

Waze's GPS system synthesizes traffic patterns and road information reported by users to make its navigation recommendations. Waze said drivers shared 90 million traffic and road reports through the application last year, which is available in 110 countries.

Waze was founded in 2008 by Uri Levine, Ehud Shabtai and Amir Shinar and is led by CEO Noam Bardin.