New Google Maps Customization Features Add Branded Touch

Posted by Derek Imes, Head of Location Services

Jul 07, 2020


Google Maps Platform reigns as the gold standard in location-based solutions with 1 billion monthly active users, 99% coverage of the world and 25 million daily updates. That’s on top of its reliable, comprehensive, real-time location information.

Recently, Google Cloud announced it now offers Google Maps Local Context to enhance your data and maps. Now it goes a step further. Enterprise users are able to enjoy a new series of Google Maps customization features that allow them to put their own personal mark on the maps they build for business. 

Let’s take a look at how you’ll be able to customize Google Maps Platform going forward.

What are the New Google Maps Customization Features?

Google Maps new featuresThe whole idea of this customization rollout is to give users more control over how their maps look. This series of styling tools give you the ability to create a custom map of any location you choose, making it easier to style, customize and manage your maps.

Google Maps Platform customization features include:

Cloud-Based Maps Styling

Create, customize, publish and manage beautiful maps in Cloud Console using Map IDs and Map Styles. A Map ID is a unique identifier that represents a single instance of a Google Map, while a Map Style represents a set of customizations that can be linked with any Map ID. 

The cloud-based style editor allows you to adjust the colors of the map to match the look and feel of your organization’s brand and style. You get Google’s amazing location data combined with your own brand’s look and feel. What’s best, you no longer need to update JSON in your code to change your map’s appearance.

Business POI Filtering

You become the curator of your customers’ mapping experience by using this filtering tool to choose the types of businesses they see on your map. When you map your data, you can select from five business categories to narrow down your map’s points of interest to deliver the most helpful information. These subcategories include Shopping, Food and Drink, Lodging, Car Rental, Gas Station.

POI Density Control

Cut down on mapping clutter, thanks to POI Density Control. Once you select your desired POI, you can adjust the density of how they are displayed on your map. When you increase the density, you can show more points of interest. Decreasing it, allows you to show less.

Real-Time Map Updates

Use Cloud Console to deploy real-time map updates across all devices and platforms. You can do it seamlessly without ever touching a line of code.

Vector Maps for JavaScript

new Google Maps featuresThis feature takes your maps a step further than the default, pixel-based maps. Using this tool, you can create maps with sharp, clear images that won’t pixelate, providing smoother navigation. 

Vector-based tiles are drawn at load time on the client-side using WebGL, a web technology that gives browser access to the GPU on the user’s device. This allows the tool to render 2D and 3D graphics. Maps are sharper, and users can closely zoom in on 3D Buildings.

Marker Collision Management

Handle POI collisions on your map and keep your markers from overlapping with points of interest on the basemap in the Vector Map format. You can modify the marker API to hide labels, for example, or you can prioritize markers for greatest visibility.

These new Google Maps customization features are yet another way Google is taking the best and making it even better by improving user experience. When you customize your map, you enhance your location-based services for your users and, ultimately, optimize your business.

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Derek Imes, Head of Location Services

Derek is the Head Location Services at Onix. Since 2013, he has focused on helping companies understand the business benefits of adopting location-based solutions. Derek helps customers understand the licensing options and best practices for deploying Google Maps solutions, both pre and post sale.

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