What Google Maps Developers Want

Adam DuVander, July 10th, 2012

Google MapsGoogle keeps expanding the features of its Google Maps API, yet there’s no shortage of things developers wish Google added. We know this because there is a public repository of issues. While some may be bugs, most are enhancements, desired additions to the web’s most popular API.

There were a number of Google Maps announcements at I/O, including transit directions available in the Google Directions API. That feature had been on Google’s radar since at least September, 2008, when it was first added to the issue tracker. Since Google allows developers to “star” issues as a means of voting for it, we know that transit was the highest unimplemented feature request.

What’s on top of the request heap now?

A look into the issue list may tell us what’s coming next, or at the very least what developers really want.

There’s also a list of things Google won’t fix. At the top: direct access to the tiles.

Everything else on the non-Won’t Fix list may very well be coming in future releases. After all, when Google released styled maps it planted itself firmly as a serious platform for mapping. Perhaps that’s why Google Maps now costs money above 25,000 map views per day.

Anti-Google? There are ways to style maps without Google and a lot of Google Maps alternatives.

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Adam DuVander
Executive Editor, ProgrammableWeb. Author, Map Scripting 101. Lover, APIs.