According to a new Google maps policy, the pricing for the Google maps using is highly increasing for the websites with a lot of queries. Supsystic is one of such companies. In the last month, we spent more than $10 000 to support Google maps. There is a huge number! You can read our previous blog post, where we discuss all changes in details and tell about how we discovered this. Also, we understand, that we are not the only one company, that was bummed out about these changes.
So, we are glad to announce about the new plugin – Ultimate maps. Here we gathered all alternatives to Google maps, that are free of charge or more cheaper, like:
- Bing maps
- Leaflet maps
Let’s look more closely to each of them.
Do you know that Bing maps is older than Google maps? Microsoft acquired MapBlast.com, the company, that originally developed this application, in 2002, but it was launched in 1998. Today, this application is supported by Bing search engine, so, finding any location or direction is an extremely easy process.
It has a lot of interesting features, like 5 types of street map views, driving, walking, and transit directions, traffic information. Also, users get an access to parking finder, a taxi fare calculator, and much more.
The Leaflet provides users with popular customization, interaction, visual, and performance features. For more information, you can visit the official site. It is worth to mention, that the library was developed by one man – Vladimir Agafonkin, which is now hired by Mapbox.
The Mapbox is a well-known provider of custom online maps. It is used by a lot of popular application and websites, like Foursquare, Facebook, the Financial Times, The Weather Channel and Snapchat. The data for maps is taken from OpenStreetMap and NASA.
The app is actively developing. It’s packed with plenty of unique and interesting features, including map augmented reality, visualizing geospatial data, and fast real-time routing.
The Thunderforest is the 4th major app that is considered as a Google maps alternatives. It has several existing maps styles:
- Transport Dark
- Spinal Map
- Mobile Atlas
In order you do not like these styles or want to add something new, you can easily create a new style, using custom cartography feature. TheThunderforest provides fast, robust, catchy-eye looking, and reliable maps for your website.
As any plugin by Supsystic, Ultimates maps plugin provides users with a plenty of features:
- Unlimited maps with unlimited markers
- Markers front-end editing with media description (text, images, video. etc.)
- Customs themes (Roadmap, Sattelite, etc.)
- Highlighting certain areas on the map with figures, like polygons or lines
- Multiple layers supporting
- Grouping several markers with clusterization
- Adding a map via shortcode or PHP code
- Import/export maps
How to use
The installation and activating processes are the same as in any other plugins:
- navigate to Plugins -> Add new
- type Ultimate Maps by Supsystic
- click on the button Install
- Activate plugin
The first step is to choose the map engine. There are 4, as we mentioned above:
- Bing maps
- Leaflet maps
After that, you can customize all the maps settings, like width, height, zoom, colors, and font. Moreover in the tab Map users can choose Map type.
In the Markers tab, you can find all options refer to markers creation, like:
Also, we provide users with the opportunity to add media files for better markers customization.
To sum up, we want to say that we welcome contributions, suggestions, and translating. Please, contact our team.