Mapbox GL for iOS

So Apple Maps is still a disaster.  But:

During WWDC Apple noted that there are no less than 680,000 apps in the App Store that use location data

That’s a lot and most of them end up using Apple’s Map API mostly because it’s easy1.  Last week Mapbox seems to have a solution ready to go though that might be easier than Apple’s and a whole lot better:

We just released Mapbox GL — a new framework for live, responsive maps in every iOS app. Now developers can have the most detailed maps sourced from ever-updating OpenStreetMap data, as well as the ability to fully control the style and brand to design maps that perfectly match their app. This is all done using our new on-device vector renderer, which uses OpenGL ES 2.0 technology for pixel-perfect map design, from antialiased fonts to polygon blurring, all hardware-accelerated and optimized for mobile devices — and all on the fly.

mapbox_apple

Apple vs. Mapbox via Mapbox.com

Of course it is open source and available on Github.  I’ve not had a chance to play with it yet but I hope to sit down with it soon.  It looks great, built on OSM and is released open source so no matter what happens to Mapbox2 I’ll still have access to the mapping library.  Really amazing stuff


  1. Or lazy, I would be lazy

  2. Not that I know a thing, but it’s always a good question