Bing Maps API FAQ

From "What is geocoding?" to how to create a map, choosing an API to answering questions like "What is spatial data?" the Bing Maps FAQ delivers the information you need to help you better understand the platform and get started with Bing Maps.

Product

A: The Bing Maps Platform provides multiple APIs that enable maps to be accessed across multiple platforms:

  • Web APIs: The Bing Maps V8 web control API can be developed using JavaScript and TypeScript. This API uses HTML5 and works on Windows, Mac, iOS, Android and Windows Phone. This API is the most widely used and the recommended API for most types of applications.
  • The Bing Maps REST Services uses REST URLs to perform tasks such as creating a static image of a map with pushpins, geocoding an address, retrieving imagery metadata or calculating a route.
  • The Bing Spatial Data Services use REST URLs to geocode and reverse-geocode large sets of spatial data and to create and query data sources. A data source is a set of data that has a spatial component such as an address, coordinates or sales region. This service then exposes this data as a spatial REST service. For example, you can create a data source for a set of stores and then query this data source to find stores that are within a specified distance of a location.
  • The Bing Maps WPF Control SDK lets developers integrate the latest Bing Maps data into rich WPF applications.
  • Windows 10: The Windows 10 Universal Platform lets you build map apps that target a range of Windows 10 devices, including phones, tablets and desktop PCs, using familiar technologies like C# and XAML. You can also leverage Aerial 3D and Streetside imagery, along with the ability to view your maps offline.
  • For more information, visit the Developer page.

A: Bing Maps allows batch geocoding. For more details visit: https://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/gg585136.aspx

A: With partners such as OnTerra Systems and EasyTerritory that have route optimization solutions, customers can supplement their Bing Maps service to have route optimization.

A: Geocoding data can be stored for as long as you have a Bing Maps contract, and as long as it will be used with Bing Maps and not another mapping platform.

A: MapPoint is no longer available as of December 31, 2014. Please visit our MapPoint Alternatives page for the options available.

A: The built-in map app of Windows 10 allows users to download street maps (not aerial/satellite maps) for certain countries. A developer can create a Windows 10 app and bring mapping into that app by using the Windows 10 Universal Windows Platform API (which requires a Bing Maps key). If the user has downloaded maps in Windows 10, then a Windows 10 app (created by a developer) would use the downloaded maps when the user is offline. If the user is online, then the Windows 10 app would fetch the maps over the web (like the rest of the Bing Maps APIs do). It’s important to note that the offline street maps (geocoding and routing as well) are limited to Windows 10 apps and require each user to download the maps ahead of time. For more information, click here.

A: Bing Maps imagery comes from a variety of different providers. Click here to view the list of providers.

A: If you are looking to print Bing Maps you will need to make sure that you are within our Bing Maps Print Rights Terms of Use.

A: Click here to find the list of Culture Codes supported.

Pricing & Purchasing

A: There are licensing plans where Bing Maps is free. Please check the following list to see if you may qualify for free use of Bing Maps:

  • Conduct fewer than 125,000 transactions per calendar year on websites and mobile apps that are not on/for the Windows Phone.
  • Conduct fewer than 50,000 transactions within any 24-hour period on Windows Development App, Education and Non-profit.

For more information, please view the Online Terms of Use and our Licensing Options chart.

A: A Bing Maps transaction is generated every time a call to a Bing Maps API is made. The more calls to the Bing Maps API’s, the more transactions that are generated. Since Bing Maps has free and paid versions, the main indication of use to focus on is billable transactions. A detailed explanation of Bing Maps transactions is available here: http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-gb/library/ff859477.aspx/ .

Transactions track Bing Maps API usage and can be billable or non-billable depending on which feature is being used. For example, using the Bing Maps V8 web control to show a map on a web page or using the Bing Maps REST Imagery API to get a static map image will both result in billable transactions, while using the Bing Maps REST Imagery API to get vintage metadata for a given map image is not a billable transaction.

Additionally, if your application is using any of the Bing Map Control API’s (i.e.: V8 web control, WPF Control, etc.) you can use a map control session ID to make subsequent Bing Maps API calls (i.e.: Bing Maps REST Locations API call, etc.) within the map be non-billable transactions. Bing Maps API requests originating from a Bing Maps control that use a session ID instead of the Bing Maps key are non-billable up to 50 requests per session. The 51st transaction and every transaction thereafter will be billable. When an application uses a map control session ID for subsequent Bing Maps API calls within the map, the number of transactions needed to license becomes simplified and often works out to the number of page views the map page receives.

Bing Maps AJAX Control Version 7 Deprecation

A: The Bing Maps AJAX Control Version 7 and SOAP Web Services were deprecated on June 30, 2017.

A: If you are using the Bing Maps AJAX Control V7 or SOAP Web Services, you will be affected. If you view your usage reports in the Bing Maps portal and see any of the following transactions listed in the usage report:

  • Bing Maps V7 transaction: "AJAXSession"
  • SOAP Service Transactions: "WS:Geocode", "WS:ReverseGeocode", "WS:GetImageryMetadata", "WS:GetMapUri", "WS:CalculateRoute", , "WS:GetImageryMetadata", "WS:CalculateRoutesFromMajorRoads", "WS:Search"

A: Bing Maps AJAX Control Version 7 (V7) were deprecated on June 30, 2017. After this date, support for the V7 control will end and service availability will no longer be guaranteed. To avoid unforeseen issues with your implementation, we encourage you to migrate to Bing Maps Version 8 web control as soon as possible.

A: Below is a comparison chart summarizing the high-level features of the offerings. More details about Bing Maps V8 web control are available on https://www.microsoft.com/maps/v8control.aspx.

FeatureV7 V8
Geocoding
Forward GeocodingXX
Reverse GeocodingXX
Batch GeocodingXX
Directions
Driving, walking and transit directionsXX
Search
AutosuggestX
Bing Spatial Data Services moduleX
Administrative Boundary dataX
Imagery
RoadXX
Road (Grayscale)X
Road (Night Mode)X
AerialXX
Ordinance Survey MapsXX
Traffic FlowXX
StreetsideX
Versioning
Experimental BranchX
Release BranchXX
Frozen BranchX
Other Map Features
HeatmapsX
Pushpin clusteringX
Drawing toolsX
Spatial Math moduleX
Vector LabelsX
Label collison detectionX
Test Data GeneratorX
Touch supportXX
Supported Data Formats
GeoJSONX
Localization
Multiple culture/language supportXX
Automatic region/culture detectionX
Development
JavaScriptXX
TypeScriptX
Interactive SDKXX
Performance
Thousands of PushpinsX
Thousands of PolygonsX

A: A migration guide entitled Migrating Bing Maps v7 to v8 is available to help guide you through the process.

A: You can find migration documentation and details about all end-of-life dates at https://www.microsoft.com/maps/discontinued-control-migration-guide.

For questions specific to your implementation, please contact your Bing Maps Sales contact or reach out to our technical team via the Bing Maps forums.

A: Please visit https://www.microsoft.com/maps/contact-us.aspx to connect with a Bing Maps Sales Specialist or be directed to technical support channels.

Documentation & Resources

A: Please follow the Mobile Brand Guidelines.

A: Visit the Bing Maps MSDN Library for information on map controls and services. Other helpful resources include the Bing Maps forum and blog.

A: For developer code samples, click here.

A: There is no download required. Visit the Bing Maps MSDN Library for information on Bing Maps SDKs and click here to view the Interactive SDK. Additionally, for an overview of how to add maps to your application, view the Using Bing Maps video.

Support & Contact

A: After you have purchased a Bing Maps license, it is important that you complete your provisioning form. If you have purchased through a Bing Maps distributor or reseller, please contact them to complete your provisioning form. If you did not purchase a Bing Maps license through a distributor or reseller, please contact Bing Maps Licensing for assistance in provisioning your account.

A: Please review the documentation on the Developer network to Get Started.

A: Licensed enterprise-level customers can expect ≥99.9% per the Bing Maps SLA (Service Level Agreement) for service availability/uptime.

A: If you have a Basic Key and are experiencing an issue, please submit it to the Bing Maps forum. If you have an Enterprise key, 24/7 enterprise-level customer support is included as part of your license. Click here to review the Enterprise Developer Support overview for further guidance.

For additional help, please contact Bing Maps at maplic@microsoft.com.

Non-Licensing Questions

A: Go to Bing Places for Business to manage the listing for your business on Bing.com.

A: Go to https://www.bing.com/maps and click on the Feedback link at the bottom of the page to report an issue.

 

Bing Maps FAQ