Google Maps Platform lets businesses integrate Maps navigation data in their apps
Google launched the first Google Maps APIs for developers back in 2005. Now, the company has announced the Google Maps Platform. It encompasses “streamlined API products” and “new industry solutions to help drive innovation.”
Google notes that it announced the first industry solution for game studios to use Google Maps data for creating real-world games in March. Now, the company also offers solutions that are tailored for ride sharing and asset tracking companies. Ride sharing companies can embed the Maps navigation experience directly into their apps to optimize the driver and customer experience.
The asset tracking offering will help businesses improve efficiencies by locating vehicles and assets in real-time, according to Google. Businesses will be able to visualize where assets have traveled, and will be able to route vehicles with complex trips. The company states that it also expects to bring new solutions to market in the future in areas where it’s positioned to offer insights and expertise.
According to Google, one of its goals is to evolve its core APIs to “make them simpler, easier to use and scalable […].” Now, the company has simplified its 18 individual APIs into three core products: Maps, Routes, and Places. This simplification has been done to make it easier for developers to add new features to their apps and sites. Additionally, Google states that these new updates will work with developers’ existing code — with no changes being required.
The company also announced that it has merged its Standard and Premium Plans to form one pay-as-you-go pricing plan for its core products. Developers buying this plan will receive the first $200 of monthly usage for free, and Google estimates that most developers will have monthly usage that will keep them within this free tier. The new pricing plan will enable them to pay only for the services that they use each month with no annual, up-front commitments, termination fees or usage limits. Google is also rolling out free customer support for all developers, and the company’s products are now integrated with Google Cloud Platform Console. The integration will make it make it easier for developers to track usage, manage projects, and discover Cloud products.
Developers will need a valid API key and a Google Cloud Platform billing account to access Google’s core products beginning June 11. After they have enabled billing, they will gain access to their $200 of free monthly usage to use for Google’s Maps, Routes, and Places products. The plan will scale according to business growth or usage spikes.
Developers currently using the core APIs are advised by Google to take a look at their guide for existing users to understand these changes in more detail and for help in the transition to the new plan.