Google Maps vs Mapbox vs OpenStreetMap

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

Google Maps

40.7K
28.3K
+ 1
566
Mapbox

708
931
+ 1
112
OpenStreetMap

250
466
+ 1
56

Google Maps vs Mapbox vs OpenStreetMap: What are the differences?

# Introduction
When it comes to online mapping services, Google Maps, Mapbox, and OpenStreetMap are some of the most popular platforms. Each of these platforms offers unique features and capabilities, making them suitable for different use cases.

1. **Data Source and Ownership**: Google Maps primarily uses data from various sources, including third-party providers and its Street View cars. Mapbox relies on a mixture of open data sources, including OpenStreetMap, but also allows users to upload their own data. OpenStreetMap, on the other hand, is a collaborative project where users can contribute and edit map data, making it a community-driven platform.

2. **Customization Options**: Mapbox provides extensive customization options for developers, allowing them to design and style maps according to their specific needs. Google Maps also offers customization features, but they are more limited compared to Mapbox. OpenStreetMap allows users to customize maps by directly editing the underlying data, giving them full control over the map's appearance.

3. **Pricing Model**: Google Maps offers a free tier for most users but charges a fee for high usage and commercial purposes through its Google Maps Platform. Mapbox provides a free tier with usage limits and charges based on the number of map views beyond those limits. OpenStreetMap, being an open-source project, is free to use without any limitations on access or view counts.

4. **Offline Usage**: Mapbox and OpenStreetMap allow users to download map data for offline usage, which can be useful in areas with poor internet connectivity. Google Maps also offers offline maps, but the functionality is more limited compared to Mapbox and OpenStreetMap.

5. **API and Development Support**: Mapbox offers robust APIs and SDKs that cater to developers looking to integrate mapping capabilities into their applications. Google Maps also provides APIs but has stricter usage limitations compared to Mapbox. OpenStreetMap, being open-source, offers APIs and libraries for developers to access and use map data freely.

6. **Global Coverage and Localization**: Google Maps has extensive global coverage and offers localization in multiple languages, making it suitable for international users. Mapbox and OpenStreetMap also provide global coverage, but the level of localization may vary depending on the region due to their reliance on community contributions for data accuracy.

In Summary, Google Maps, Mapbox, and OpenStreetMap each have unique strengths in terms of data sourcing, customization, pricing, offline usage, development support, and global coverage, catering to different user needs and preferences in the world of online mapping services. 
Advice on Google Maps, Mapbox, and OpenStreetMap
  1. I would like to input a spreadsheet with names and associated addresses into a map program to; pinpoint all of the locations on a map. How can I do that? On which map? Are there field size limitations? All help would be appreciated.

  2. There is a subdivision that is about one(1) mile by 3/4 mile in size. Is there a map program that would create the most efficient way to drive all of the streets in the subdivision without a lot of doubling back?

See more
Replies (1)

You could use a low-code platform to read the spreadsheet and use them as input for the pin pointing. The most expert provider would HERE or TomTom for the best routing algoritmes. Input parameters would be dependent on the chosen provider.

I see your stack is mostly Google and I am not familiar with that. But we have implemented this through the M365 Teams/SharePoint, Excell, MS PowerPlatform, our WMS and Azure.

See more

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."

See more
Replies (6)
Recommends
on
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.

See more
Blair Gemmer
Software Engineer at VYNYL · | 2 upvotes · 166.2K views
Recommends
on
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!

See more
Recommends
on
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.

See more
Shuuji TAKAHASHI
Recommends
on
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.

See more
Recommends
on
OpenStreetMapOpenStreetMap

Its open source and we use it.

See more
Fabio Fraga Machado
Recommends
on
OpenStreetMapOpenStreetMap

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

See more
Get Advice from developers at your company using StackShare Enterprise. Sign up for StackShare Enterprise.
Learn More
Pros of Google Maps
Pros of Mapbox
Pros of OpenStreetMap
  • 253
    Free
  • 136
    Address input through maps api
  • 81
    Sharable Directions
  • 47
    Google Earth
  • 46
    Unique
  • 3
    Custom maps designing
  • 28
    Best mapping service outside of Google Maps
  • 22
    OpenStreetMap
  • 15
    Beautifully vectorable
  • 11
    Fluid user experience
  • 8
    Extensible
  • 7
    React/ RNative integration
  • 5
    3D Layers
  • 4
    Low Level API
  • 4
    Affordable
  • 3
    Great customer support
  • 3
    Custom themes
  • 2
    High data volume rendering
  • 22
    Simple
  • 17
    Free
  • 9
    Open-Source
  • 7
    Open-Data
  • 1
    React/ RNative integration

Sign up to add or upvote prosMake informed product decisions

Cons of Google Maps
Cons of Mapbox
Cons of OpenStreetMap
  • 4
    Google Attributions and logo
  • 1
    Only map allowed alongside google place autocomplete
    Be the first to leave a con
      Be the first to leave a con

      Sign up to add or upvote consMake informed product decisions

      - No public GitHub repository available -
      - 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 Mapbox?

      We make it possible to pin travel spots on Pinterest, find restaurants on Foursquare, and visualize data on GitHub.

      What is 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.

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

      What companies use Google Maps?
      What companies use Mapbox?
      What companies use OpenStreetMap?

      Sign up to get full access to all the companiesMake informed product decisions

      What tools integrate with Google Maps?
      What tools integrate with Mapbox?
      What tools integrate with OpenStreetMap?

      Sign up to get full access to all the tool integrationsMake informed product decisions

      Blog Posts

      JavaScriptGitHubNode.js+26
      20
      4969
      What are some alternatives to Google Maps, Mapbox, and OpenStreetMap?
      TomTom
      It is the leading independent location technology specialist, shaping mobility with highly accurate maps, navigation, real-time traffic info and services.
      JavaScript
      JavaScript is most known as the scripting language for Web pages, but used in many non-browser environments as well such as node.js or Apache CouchDB. It is a prototype-based, multi-paradigm scripting language that is dynamic,and supports object-oriented, imperative, and functional programming styles.
      Git
      Git is a free and open source distributed version control system designed to handle everything from small to very large projects with speed and efficiency.
      GitHub
      GitHub is the best place to share code with friends, co-workers, classmates, and complete strangers. Over three million people use GitHub to build amazing things together.
      Python
      Python is a general purpose programming language created by Guido Van Rossum. Python is most praised for its elegant syntax and readable code, if you are just beginning your programming career python suits you best.
      See all alternatives