In today’s time, it has become a norm to use maps on our smartphones.
Everyone does and should, as it guides us to our destination without fail. And because we know the fact that maps are widely used, it is only a wise decision to build an application of your own.
However, building a geocoding/map application from scratch can prove to be time-consuming and a lot more expensive. In that case, using API is a great solution.
In fact, most of the applications you see are running on API itself, so there’s no reason why you shouldn’t utilize it as well. In this article, you’ll discover the best geocoding and maps API to build your applications with ease.
But first, let’s get the basics right.
What is Geocoding?
Geocoding is something that we use all the time, even when we access Google Maps or other mapping services.
To put it as simple as I can – when we open our Map app, we type our destination on the search bar, and it returns with a graphical representation of the location marked with a flag. That process is called Geocoding. No matter if you type an actual address or simply the name of the street or locality, Geocoding can recognize all of that.
Benefits of using API to build your application
It is a universal fact that building an application from scratch is a lot more expensive than integrating API. APIs can ridiculously save you money in the long run as well because it eliminates the need to hire different developers to assemble each feature separately. APIs come pre-built with all the functionality.
Faster execution of building application
With the use of APIs, you can quickly get set up with your application to a point where you can start offering it to your customers. Most of the APIs are quick and easy to integrate. On the other hand, building an application from scratch would take a ton of time.
Adapt to changes
Everything needs tweaking and updating on a regular basis, and the same is the case with map applications. To stay relevant, you’d need to catch up with the changes required. When you use APIs to assemble your applications, you don’t need to worry about the required changes because it is all taken care of by the API provider.
Geocoding API Solutions
Google Maps Platform
I am guessing you already know why Google Maps Platform is listed on top here. It’s a company that almost everybody is familiar with, and what better way to build your application than this. This solution is well-built with reliable data from over 200 countries and territories.
They pay a lot of attention to accuracy, which is why they have over 25 million updates daily. You can hardly go wrong with this.
Their products include:
You can easily integrate each of these products into your system.
With forward and as well as reverse geocoding, Positionstack is based on REST API that can be a great piece for your application. It has over 2 billion addresses covered throughout the world, which tells a lot about this API.
- Real-time geocoding
- Worldwide data
- Frequent updates daily
You can send up to 10,000 geocoding requests every day for free, after which premium plans start at just $9.99/month.
Here has a wide range of brilliant GPS APIs with rich location data that can make your customers’ lives a lot easier. It collects data from over 200 countries and is updated every single day. Not to mention, it’s highly accurate and detailed.
Their geocoding is super precise, which comprises of over 300 million addresses from 65 different countries. I’d highly recommend giving this one a test.
An API that can seamlessly convert coordinates to and from places, OpenCage Geocoder is another great option that is easy to integrate and covers worldwide.
It goes through tens of millions of requests per day, with 100% uptime in most cases. It is updated over 3 million times every day, and best of all, it is affordable. Pricing plans start from just $50/month, but before that, you can also make use of the free trial.
With clear-cut location data and advanced developer tools, Mapbox is here to change the way people navigate literally. No matter if you’re looking for a stunning map to integrate into your website or develop a full-blown application out of it, they’ve got you covered.
With their API, you can:
- Use Mapbox’s powerful data
- Customize your map to your requirements
- Upload or even create custom data
- Integrate geocoding, directions, spatial analysis, and others
- Enable staggering augmented reality navigation
There’s so much more to it that can only be discovered once it’s tried. You can directly get in touch with them to receive your access.
With a network of over 34,000 developers and entrepreneurs who utilize their amazing API, Mapquest Developer probably has all that you’re searching for. It is full of different web services, such as:
- Static map
You can see their tools in action and even get your free API key for 15,000 transactions per month.
A very affordable and scalable solution for geocoding and maps, LocationIQ is as intelligent as its name. It acquires data from a bunch of different sources like OpenStreetMap and Open Addresses. And the great thing is, it works worldwide.
It is trusted by companies like Samsung, Amazon, Uber, and Harvard University. You can use this API free for up to 10,000 requests per day.
With real-time maps and traffic data, TomTom comes with some unbeatable functions that do worldwide coverage. From maps, directions, and traffic to places, tracking, and SDKs, this solution is packed for your needs.
Before integrating the API, you’ll be given plenty of code samples, tutorials, and toolkits to make sure the process goes as smooth as possible. How good is that!
Geoapify can help you build a custom map without any coding or a location intelligence solution with the utmost ease. You can choose a map design and even further customize it to fit your brand. All of their maps are hosted on the cloud and updated every single day.
With the use of their API documentation and Playground, things get a lot simpler for you.
With Pitney Bowes, you can choose from a massive library of location intelligence APIs that comprises of various “Geos” meant for different purposes. Some of them are:
- GeoCode for location coordinates
- GeoSearch for autocomplete address search bar
- GeoZone for different geographic zones
- GeoMap for beautiful location visualization
- GeoRoute for the right directions
There are a lot more of them, and you can try them out by taking the free trial.
Geoconcept can do some amazing things like tracking a fleet of vehicles, locating calls, and even identifying the closest delivery point. Obviously, those were just additional things. It can do all of the things a traditional location API does.
The different APIs include:
The integration process is straightforward, and you can get started for free.
A completely free and open-source API, OpenLayers makes it super convenient to place a dynamic map into your web page. You can customize the look of it and even extend the functions by simply merging third-party libraries.
It is 100% mobile-ready, and you can get started as soon as now with the help of their docs and tutorials. Besides, you can even hop into their workshop to learn the ins and outs of OpenLayers.
With the use of the above API solutions, you can build your own GPS-based application while massively saving money and time.