Tag Archives: iOS

Avenza releases PDF Maps 1.6 update on iTunes App Store

- Geospatial PDF reader updated with new features and tools -

Toronto, ON, December 21 - Avenza Systems Inc., the leading developer of cartographic software –including MAPublisher® for Adobe® Illustrator® and Geographic Imager® geospatial tools for Adobe Photoshop®– is pleased to announce the release of PDF Maps 1.6, the latest version of the popular map and navigation app on the Apple iOS platform. The PDF Maps app allows users to explore and navigate maps offline without having to worry about cellular data connectivity or incur data roaming charges compared to other streaming map apps.

"The focus of this release is about enhancing existing features and tools to allow our users to experience, navigate, and view maps on Apple iOS devices even better" said Ted Florence, President of Avenza. "Many of the optimizations and improvements have stemmed from user feedback. We're listening to our users and creating tools that suit their needs. In the end, we're making a much better product than even we anticipated," he added.

This release of PDF Maps offers many features including:

  • Data collection - You can now create, import, and export attribute schemas with pick lists.
  • Improved organization - Added folders to the Map List and the ability to move maps between folders.
  • Nearby maps - Maps within 100 km will be shown when panning to the edges of a map.
  • Measure Tool optimization - Measure Area and Measure Direction tools are now merged into one tool. There is also a new option to create custom units.
  • New coordinate display format - Added the Degree Decimal Minutes format.
  • Add placemark optimization - Placemarks can now be added while following your current location.
  • GPS mode optimization - GPS mode is more tolerant to movements and allows adding placemarks while following your location.
  • Photos taken within the app are now saved to the Camera Roll.
  • Improved KML/KMZ file compatibility with Avenza MAPublisher and Esri software.


The PDF Maps app takes advantage of geospatial technology that allows travelers to view and measure real world locations and attributes. Paired together with mobile devices that utilize GPS, such as an iPhone or iPad, the PDF Maps app provides constant access to geographic locations and even points of interest without the risk of losing reception due to cell tower proximity – making it the ultimate traveling accessory for those that are enthusiastic about travel or anywhere internet bandwidth is not available or is cost-prohibitive when roaming internationally. In combination with the embedded map store PDF Maps takes map use commerce into the iTunes-like digital age previously reserved for music, books and videos.

PDF Maps is available now on the iTunes App Store free of charge for personal use. For more information about the app and Avenza Map Store , visit the PDF Maps. Pricing of each map is set by the publisher and free maps remain free to users through the PDF Maps in-app map store.

More about Avenza Systems Inc.

Avenza Systems Inc. is an award-winning, privately held corporation that provides cartographers and GIS professionals with powerful software tools for making better maps. In addition to software offerings for Mac and Windows users, Avenza offers value-added data sets, product training and consulting services.

Read More »

Comparing Apple’s Maps and Google Maps, and Other Related News

Tidbits offers an interesting article comparing Apple Maps with Google Maps.

The article's conclusion: "In the end, I believe that the real area where Google Maps stands out from Apple’s Maps is in transit directions, which I can’t test, but which have been praised by city dwellers like David Pogue of the New York Times, and Jacqui Cheng of Ars Technica, Dan Moren of Macworld, and Andy Ihnatko of the Chicago Sun-Times. Otherwise, both apps do a decent job and do so with entirely reasonable interfaces. Apple’s mapping data undoubtedly isn’t as good as Google’s, overall, but in most cases, I doubt that it will make a significant difference. And it’s now easy enough — thanks to the “via transit” trick — to compare routes in both apps, though I suppose that then raises the issue of which you want to believe."

Related news include:

  • MacRumors informing us that Google Maps for iOS Downloaded More than 10 Million Times
  • From the same source, Apple Reportedly in Talks for Data-Sharing Deal with Foursquare

Read More »

Google Maps for iOS Available

Done. Google Maps for iOS has just been made available. From the official description: "Navigate your world with Google Maps, now available for iPhone. Get comprehensive, accurate and easy-to-use maps with built-in Google local search, voice guided turn-by-turn navigation, public transit directions, Street View and more. Use Google Maps to discover great places to eat, drink, shop and play, with ratings and reviews from people you trust. Sign in to save your favorite places and quickly access all your past searches and directions from your computer, right on your phone."

MacRumors offers an entry named Roundup of Features in Google Maps for iOS: Better Design than Android Version, iPad Version Coming. Which includes:

  • A horizontal two-finger swipe allows you to access a menu that shows traffic, public transit, satellite view and Google Earth (which sends you to the Google Earth app).
  • Google's point-of-interest database allows you, for example, to read a restaurant review on Zagat, read the menu, book reservations and see interior photos at 100 restaurants.
  • Pogue also notes there's a Compass Mode that allows you, at certain locations, to move your phone around and allow you to see the interior of a business on your screen.

Read More »

Batch Geonews: JS.geo, Instant StreetView, 3D Printing, Drones, Autodesk in the Cloud, and more

Here's the recent geonews in batch mode.

From the Esri front:

  • An interesting entry on Designing the next generation of online Topographic Maps
  • There's an ArcGIS Online World Topographic Map New Design which includes High-resolution imagery for South America, Australia, New Zealand, and Afghanistan
  • The Esri U.S. Demographic Data Release

On the web maps front:

  • We mentioned it before, and here's more details on JS.geo: A Meeting of Javascript Mappers in Denver
  • There's a new site to give you Instant Google Street View (direct link)... worth trying, it's really fast
  • Also Google-related, the GEB talks about GPS4Sport that combines GPS with Video and Google Earth
  • On Apple Maps
    • Rumors of OS X 10.9 to Include Siri and Maps Integration
    • A lot of geoblogs mentioned that Apple axed the head of its mapping team, Richard Williamson (more here)
  • Microsoft added New Imagery Added to Windows 8 Maps App & Bing Maps
  • The MapBox iOS SDK hits version 0.5.0
  • Two weeks ago, TomTom launched its SDK for LBS Apps, including maps, geocoding, routing, traffic

In the miscellaneous category:

  • Launched less than 10 days ago, MarineRegions, "towards a global standard of georeferenced marine names" (via Kurt)
  • A slashdot story named French Company Building a Mobile Internet Just For Things
  • While 3D printing have most of its applications outside of geospatial, I found interesting that it's really going mainstream as demonstrated by Staples To Offer 3D Printing Services, an O'Reilly story named Printing ourselves, the state of 3D Printing Patent Suits (via OR), and yes, you can 3D-print your own drone
  • More news about drones:
    • The Make magazine offers a gift guide for aerial drones (via OR)
    • But beware, High Levels of Burnout in US Drone Pilots (via OR)
  • VerySpatial offers an entry on Forensic GIS and the Role of Geospatial Technologies for Investigating Crime and Providing Evidence
  • Apparently, there's Nokia offline maps available in Firefox OS (alpha)
  • If you're excited by OGC standards
    • There's the development of an international standard for 4D archaeological data
    • And soon, Augmented Reality Standard ARML 2.0 in its Final Stage
  • If you're in the U.S., you'll be interested by the GAO Report on Federal Geospatial Data Coordination
  • You wonder about earth observation satellites from Russia? Here's news about the Resurs-P with 3-m hyperspectral capabilities and other Russian satellites
  • As part of Autodesk University, you'll find the Autodesk CEO saying “I do believe that everything is moving to the cloud.” and an entry indicating that Autodesk's future is in the cloud

In the maps category:

  • Interesting maps, U.S. Geography of Personality: The United States of Mind
Read More »

Nokia Launches Free Mapping Alternative for iOS: ‘HERE Maps’

A week ago Nokia announced the HERE brand, and today unsurprisingly Nokia launched the free mapping alternative for iOS: 'HERE Maps'. Get the HERE Maps app here.

From MacRumors: "Features include: 

  • Map views – Pick the map you need from map view, live traffic view, public transport line view or satellite view 
  • Save map areas & wander without data coverage 
  • Maps, search and place coverage for nearly 200 countries 
  • Step-by-Step voice-guided walk navigation 
  • Walk navigation through pedestrian routes, parks, alleyways, and more 
  • Public transportation and driving directions"

MacRumors also quotes The Verge's review: "Obviously this is Nokia's first stab at an iOS client for its new mapping service, and in many ways it's more functional than Apple's native Maps client, but for now, many of the additional features don't work as well as they ought to."

Read More »

Nokia Announces HERE and Launches Free Maps iOS App with Offline Mode and Transit Directions

MacRumors report that Nokia will Launch a Free Maps App with Offline Mode and Transit Directions for iOS.

From MacRumors: "Nokia today announced an expansion of its mapping services, launching a new "HERE" brand for the products and announcing that it will be introducing a new iOS mapping app in the coming weeks. [...] Based on HTML5, it will include offline capabilities, voice-guided walk navigation, and public transport directions. The application is scheduled to be available for free download from Apple's App Store in the coming weeks."

Read More »

Batch Geonews: JS.geo Conference, ArcMap2SLD, MapQuest Discover, GLONASS Corruption, and much more

Here's the latest batch-mode edition of the geonews.

From the open source front:

  • InaSAFE 1.0 launched, it's a "free software that produces realistic natural hazard impact scenarios for better planning, preparedness and response activities", it's also a QGIS plugin

From the Esri front:

  • Interested by the SLD standard? Here's about converting an ArcMap project file into an SLD document with ArcMap2SLD
  • Here's how to add access to various formats to ArcGIS using GDAL/OGR
  • Here's How to build an Apple Map app for iOS using the ArcGIS Runtime SDK for iOS

From the Google front:

  • Google reminds us to let indoor Google Maps be your guide this holiday shopping season
  • There were Big updates to Google Mars
  • There's also Google Earth Outreach in Australia and New Zealand now

In the miscellaneous category:

  • Bill Gates writes about GIS, GPS and maps, Digital Mapping Technology Helps Polio Vaccinators Zero In
  • Here's another must-read entry on the GIS crisis from Brian Timoney, arguing that (Domain Experience + GIS)   >   (GIS + domain experience)
  • James tells us about the upcoming JS.geo Geospatial JavaScript conference in Denver January 14-15, attendance is also only 10$
  • Another story on Secret Stingray Warrantless Cellphone Tracking
  • GLONASS corruption exposed and 200M$ stolen, GLONASS Satellite System Designer Fired
  • An Apple Maps consequence; Scott Forstall Reportedly Forced Out of Apple
  • A few news from MapQuest, New MapQuest Gas Prices App and MapQuest for iPhone with Traffic-Influenced Directions, and they also introduced MapQuest Discover, a new MapQuest Local, and more: "a photo-centric social and travel experience centered on places that people may want to explore"
  • Geospatial isn't just for driverless cars, Motorcycle App Helps You Ride Faster, Turn Sharper, Brake Harder
  • We already know about drones, More Drones Set To Use US Air Space
  • An article on Taking the 'Pulse' of Volcanoes Using Satellite Images
  • Meet the World's First 3D Printing Photo Booth and on that topic, How to print a 3D Google Earth building using Makerbot
  • APB provides Bentley Systems by the Numbers
  • Apparently, U.S. Weather Satellites Are Dying
  • Here's a different 3D game, where you learn about the effects of the speed of light (via ORR)
  • Here's a generic article on how web mapping is helping government improve communications and services

And finally, at the suggestion of a Slashgeo user which made a donation, we added a 'Paypal button' to ease the process of making donation to Slashgeo.

Read More »

Google Employees Suggest Apple Approval of Google Maps App ‘Unlikely’

Discussed both on Slashdot and MacRumors, respectively, Google Doubts Apple Will Approve Its New Maps Application and Google Employees Suggest Apple Approval of Google Maps App 'Unlikely'.

The Slashdot summary: "Even though Apple's App Store has also been friendly enough to offer alternative mapping applications to ameliorate customers upset with Apple's new default Maps app, the Cupertino, Calif.-based company may not be so friendly as to approve a Maps app submission from Google, which used to be responsible for the Maps experience in iOS until the iPhone 5. On Monday, sources at Google familiar with its mapping plans said the chances of Apple approving a dedicated Google Maps app on iOS 6 are 'not optimistic.' Specifically, they pointed to the lack of any mapping app in the 'Find maps for your iPhone' section of the App Store — accessible only via iPhones or iPads — that use the Google Maps APIs to call wirelessly for location, routing or point-of-interest (POI) data."

Read More »

Google Geonews: Biggest Street View Update, New GM Tracks API and GM Geolocation API, GM for iOS Alpha, and more

Here's the recent Google-related geonews.

From official sources:

  • Google made their biggest Street View update ever: "[...] doubling our number of special collections and updating over 250,000 miles of roads around the world. We’re increasing Street View coverage in Macau, Singapore, Sweden, the U.S., Thailand, Taiwan, Italy, Great Britain, Denmark, Norway and Canada. And we’re launching special collections in South Africa, Japan, Spain, France, Brazil and Mexico, among others."
  • There's expanded coverage of building footprints in Google Maps: "25 million new building footprints that have been added to Google Maps"
  • The Dev blog introduces the Google Maps Tracks API and the Google Maps Geolocation API:
    • Google Maps Tracks API allows an organization to build applications that can store, display and analyze GPS data on a map.  The API is built on top of Google’s reliable cloud infrastructure and offers specialized features such as geo-fencing.
    • Google Maps Geolocation API enables an application or device to determine its own location without the use of GPS by looking up the locations of nearby wifi access points and cell towers. By limiting GPS usage, a device can save battery life and work indoors or in remote areas.
  • Here's Street View inside Google's data centers

From other sources:

  • Here's early screenshots of Google Maps for iOS in alpha testing
  • The GEB tells about weather in Google Earth
  • And of course, there was the expected satellite imagery update

Read More »

Apple Maps Roundup: Apple Apologies, Alternatives, Reviews, and much more

Quite a lot of news related to the recent launch of Apple Maps along with iOS 6. We already mentioned some backlash and Google and Apple Maps. And here's what's new.

Most surprising is A letter from Tim Cook on Apple Maps, that starts with: "At Apple, we strive to make world-class products that deliver the best experience possible to our customers. With the launch of our new Maps last week, we fell short on this commitment. We are extremely sorry for the frustration this has caused our customers and we are doing everything we can to make Maps better." This was a topic discussed over Slashdot amongst many other digital places.

Other Apple Maps related news:

  • An entry on Apple's New App Store Feature Section for Alternative Maps Apps
  • Another Slashdot discussion on Why Apple Replaced iOS Maps
  • MacRumors also had an entry named How To Report a Problem With iOS 6 Maps Data
  • O'Reilly have a full article titled Apple's maps problem isn't about software or design. It's about data.: "As Stephen O’Grady has pointed out, the problem with maps is really a data problem, not a software or design problem. If Apple’s maps app was ugly or had a poor user interface, it would be fixed within a month. But Apple is really looking at a data problem: bad data, incomplete data, conflicting data, poor quality data, incorrectly formatted data."
  • If you're looking for Apple Maps reviews, TMR shares plenty of them (4 links), including: "A lot of people think that the new maps are a substantial downgrade, not just in terms of missing features (Street View) or features that will require third-party plugins (transit directions), but in terms of basic features like local search and directions. Josh thinks that local search is “a tremendous step backwards and something that cripples iOS for Apple’s customers” because it’s limited to names, addresses and Yelp categories."
  • APB also shared their Quick Take on Apple Maps in iOS 6
  • MapQuest took the opportunity to remind us in 2 entries about the updated MapQuest app for iOS
  • Direction Mag thinks Apple Needs to Acquire TomTom
  • Ogle Earth shares an entry on Apple Maps and the Diaoyu/Senkaku islands

My personal experience with Apple Maps was rather very positive so far. Maybe my region is just lucky, but the Apple Maps app is great looking, fast (for the data it displays) and was accurate enough for the 500km of roads where we've been relying on Apple Maps last weekend. And the 3D for my city (Montreal) is awesome, much better than the 2D Google-maps based iOS 5 app. I haven't used the Apple Maps search feature extensively and I haven't compared with what's being offered on Android nowadays.

Read More »