Saturday, 31 March 2012

iPad maps

Here is a small selection of mapping tools available on the iPad. Some are from the Appstore, others simply from the web. These are screen shots that I took for those (thanks my readers for how-to tips).

Mapbox has an iPad app downloadable for free from the Appstore. It also has a neat twist in that files like KML & TileMill and feeds like GeoRSS and GeoJSON can be loaded straight from Dropbox. This is a KML of Amundsen's dash to the South Pole I looked up on the centennial to Scott's expedition. 

click image to enlarge

The same can be done with Google Earth, better rendered as it's a globe-based iPad app.

click image to enlarge on the other hand boasts that with HTML5 you need no App as it works perfectly as-is including fondleslabs. Here's a shot of my project on Medieval Fenlands that includes BGS's onshore and offshore geology as web services.

click image to enlarge

Maps I posted on also show well as-is, for example this real-time DIY weather map for the Middle East: post dust clouds and wind direction from NOAA to see the next storm before it comes!
click image to enlarge
I think the coolest however is the wonderful Kuwait Community Map posted by Nishant Arora from Esri's local distributor, that shows streets and buildings in glorious detail. Available on, I think it shows best on Esri's free iPad application.
click image to enlarge

The upshot is that while there is a variety of apps available for iPads - haven't covered paying ones or custom web maps that can be built for fondleslabs, discussed among others by Esri - web maps appear to work just as well. The advent of HTML5 will especially help render vector maps on smartphone limited bandwidth.


  1. To take screenshots on iOS you press the power button and the home button immediately after the power button. Screen goes white and if sound is on you get a camera shutter sound.