Google Maps vs OpenLayers

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Google Maps

30.8K
19.4K
+ 1
561
OpenLayers

209
346
+ 1
49
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Google Maps vs OpenLayers: What are the differences?

Google Maps: Build highly customisable maps with your own content and imagery. Create rich applications and stunning visualisations of your data, leveraging the comprehensiveness, accuracy, and usability of Google Maps and a modern web platform that scales as you grow; OpenLayers: A high-performance, feature-packed library for all your mapping needs. An opensource javascript library to load, display and render maps from multiple sources on web pages.

Google Maps and OpenLayers belong to "Mapping APIs" category of the tech stack.

Some of the features offered by Google Maps are:

  • Maps Image APIs
  • Places API
  • Web Services

On the other hand, OpenLayers provides the following key features:

  • Tiled Layers - Pull tiles from OSM, Bing, MapBox, Stamen, MapQuest, and any other XYZ source you can find. OGC mapping services and untiled layers also supported.
  • Fast & Mobile Ready - Mobile support out of the box. Build lightweight custom profiles with just the components you need.
  • Vector Layers - Render vector data from GeoJSON, TopoJSON, KML, GML, and a growing number of other formats.

"Free" is the primary reason why developers consider Google Maps over the competitors, whereas "Flexibility" was stated as the key factor in picking OpenLayers.

OpenLayers is an open source tool with 5.17K GitHub stars and 1.97K GitHub forks. Here's a link to OpenLayers's open source repository on GitHub.

According to the StackShare community, Google Maps has a broader approval, being mentioned in 1975 company stacks & 1093 developers stacks; compared to OpenLayers, which is listed in 7 company stacks and 4 developer stacks.

Advice on Google Maps and OpenLayers

From a StackShare Community member: "We're a team of two starting to write a mobile app. The app will heavily rely on maps and this is where my partner and I are not seeing eye-to-eye. I would like to go with an open source solution like OpenStreetMap that is used by Apple & Foursquare. He would like to go with Google Maps since more apps use it and has better support (according to him). Mapbox is also an option but I don’t know much about it."

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Replies (6)
Blair Gemmer
Software Engineer at VYNYL · | 2 upvotes · 75.8K views
Recommends
Google MapsGoogle Maps

Google Maps is best because it is practically free (they give you $300 in free credits per month and it's really hard to go over the free tier unless you really mean business) and it's the best!

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Recommends
MapboxMapbox

I use Mapbox because We need 3D maps and navigation, it has a great plugin for React and React Native which we use. Also the Mapbox Geocoder is great.

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Recommends
OpenStreetMapOpenStreetMap

I use OpenStreetMap because that has a strong community. It takes some time to catch up with Google Maps, but OpenStreetMap will become great solution.

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Recommends
OpenStreetMapOpenStreetMap

Its open source and we use it.

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Fabio Fraga Machado
Recommends
OpenStreetMapOpenStreetMap

I use OpenStreetMap because i have the control of the environment, using Docker containers or bare-metal servers.

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Shuuji TAKAHASHI
Recommends
Google MapsGoogle Maps

I use Google Maps because it has a lot of great features such as Google's rich APIs, geolocation functions, navigation search feature, street map view, auto-generated 3D city map.

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Pros of Google Maps
Pros of OpenLayers
  • 250
    Free
  • 136
    Address input through maps api
  • 81
    Sharable Directions
  • 46
    Google Earth
  • 45
    Unique
  • 3
    Custom maps designing
  • 13
    Flexibility
  • 10
    Maturity
  • 7
    Incredibly comprehensive, excellent support
  • 7
    Open Source
  • 3
    Low Level API
  • 3
    Choice of map providers
  • 3
    Extensible
  • 3
    Strong community

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Cons of Google Maps
Cons of OpenLayers
  • 3
    Google Attributions and logo
  • 1
    Only map allowed alongside google place autocomplete
    Be the first to leave a con

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    - No public GitHub repository available -

    What is Google Maps?

    Create rich applications and stunning visualisations of your data, leveraging the comprehensiveness, accuracy, and usability of Google Maps and a modern web platform that scales as you grow.

    What is OpenLayers?

    An opensource javascript library to load, display and render maps from multiple sources on web pages.

    Need advice about which tool to choose?Ask the StackShare community!

    What companies use Google Maps?
    What companies use OpenLayers?
    See which teams inside your own company are using Google Maps or OpenLayers.
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    What tools integrate with Google Maps?
    What tools integrate with OpenLayers?
      No integrations found

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      What are some alternatives to Google Maps and OpenLayers?
      Mapbox
      We make it possible to pin travel spots on Pinterest, find restaurants on Foursquare, and visualize data on GitHub.
      OpenStreetMap
      OpenStreetMap is built by a community of mappers that contribute and maintain data about roads, trails, cafés, railway stations, and much more, all over the world.
      TomTom
      It is the leading independent location technology specialist, shaping mobility with highly accurate maps, navigation, real-time traffic info and services.
      Leaflet
      Leaflet is an open source JavaScript library for mobile-friendly interactive maps. It is developed by Vladimir Agafonkin of MapBox with a team of dedicated contributors. Weighing just about 30 KB of gzipped JS code, it has all the features most developers ever need for online maps.
      Java Persistence API
      It is a Java application programming interface specification that describes the management of relational data in applications using Java Platform, Standard Edition and Java Platform, Enterprise Edition.It provides a POJO persistence model for object-relational mapping.
      See all alternatives