March 8, 2013

Google Maps API update

If – like us – you use a Google Map within your website, you’ll perhaps be aware that Google has officially deprecated JavaScript API (Application Programming Interface) Version 2, API for Flash and Google Local Search API.

They don’t all stop working at the same time – existing files you create will continue to ‘talk to’ the Google Maps servers – but the API will no longer be supported or developed.

Google Maps JavaScript API Version 2 is the most pressing to consider. That will continue to work until 19 May 2013. And we, like Google, recommend you start to migrate your code to version 3 now – just as we’ve done for our site and plenty of our clients already.

Google Maps is now concentrating on version 3 of API, which is implemented in HTML and JavaScript so – worth noting – it cannot be run inside a PDF file. It can, however, be run inside a PDF portfolio in Acrobat and Adobe Reader X by adding a live web link, rather than a PDF document.

Version 3 of Google Maps JavaScript API lets you embed Google Maps in your own web pages with JavaScript. It also provides a number of utilities for manipulating maps and adding content, which allows you to create robust maps applications on your website.

Version 3 Google Maps API for Flash provides a way to add interactive Google Maps to your website, using Adobe’s Flash plugin to display dynamic map content. Version 3 of Google Local Search API, meanwhile, provides a JavaScript interface to embed Google maps results in your website or application. Some common uses of this API include: displaying localised results to a search query, building a searchable map that displays query results, and creating static map images containing local search results as well as driving directions from a central point to a search result.

Despite all these perks, though, the simple fact remains that, despite a pacifying statement about being committed to Flash, Google clearly isn’t.