Amazon makes its Maps API available; Nokia is the wizard behind Amazon's mapping service

Amazon makes its Maps API available; Nokia is the wizard behind Amazon's mapping service
Amazon hasn't been so quick to reveal who is behind the Google-less mapping application on the Amazon Kindle Fire line. The secret is now out thanks to Nokia spokesperson Sebastian Kurme who revealed that it is the Finnish based company behind the service on Amazon's tablets. The same software powers the highly regarded Nokia Drive as well as Yahoo! Maps and some of the mapping features offered by Bing. Nokia's Location Platform allows developers to use Nokia's set of APIs to build location based mobile apps with functions for "Maps, Positioning, Places, Directions, and Traffic”. The APIs will work on mobile and web apps as well as on HTML5 apps (in beta).

The news of who provides the mapping services for Amazon came after the online retailer announced that it would launch a Maps API to allow developers the opportunity to offer Google-less location data for apps to be used on the Amazon Kindle Fire tablets. Google also offers a similar API to third party developers, but the Amazon tablets have been DeGoogle-ized, to coin a word, and Amazon would surely prefer that developers not use the Google offering.

In beta, developers who want to switch to the Amazon API must be invited. To do so, click on the sourcelink or go to the Amazon Mobile App Distribution Portal. Amazon says it will use a "simple migration path" for those who want to switch.from the native Google API on Android. The API will allow developers to toss in an interactive map on their app which will allow users to "travel" the world. Local businesses can use the ability to put up a custom overlay to attract customers using a variety of pins or pointers to show their location on a map.
source: Amazon, TheNextWeb via Engadget


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